nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2017‒03‒26
seven papers chosen by
Michele Battisti
ifo Institut

  1. The Missing Men: World War I and Female Labor Participation By Gay, Victor; Boehnke, Jörn
  2. Gender Differentials in Health: A Differences-in-Decompositions Estimate By Kehinde O. Omotoso; Steven F. Koch
  3. Does Quebec's Subsidized Child Care Policy Give Boys and Girls an Equal Start? By Michael J. Kottelenberg; Steven F. Lehrer
  4. The Unfolding of Gender Gap in Education By Nadir Altinok; Abdurrahman Aydemir
  5. Women's Participation in the Egyptian Labor Market: 1998-2012 By Rana Hendy
  6. The economic consequences of family policies: lessons from a century of legislation in high-income countries By Claudia Olivetti; Barbara Petrongolo
  7. Employment Insurance Changes and Reemployment Outcomes: Evidence from the Canadian Labour Force Survey 2003-2009 By Stephanie Lluis; Brian McCall

  1. By: Gay, Victor; Boehnke, Jörn
    Abstract: We explore the effect of military fatalities from World War I on female labor participation in post-war France. We build a unique dataset containing individual level information for all 1.3 million fallen soldiers, and find that the tightness of the marriage market along with negative income shocks generated by the scarcity of men induced many young single women and older widows to enter the labor force permanently after the war, especially in the industrial sector. These findings are robust to alternative empirical strategies, including an instrumental variables strategy based on idiosyncrasies generated by the recruitment process of the army.
    Keywords: female labor, labor supply, sex ratio, marriage market
    JEL: J12 J16 J22 N34
    Date: 2017–01–21
  2. By: Kehinde O. Omotoso (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa); Steven F. Koch (Department of Economics, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa)
    Abstract: We analyse changes in gendered health differentials between 2005 and 2014, using data from population-weighted General Household Surveys (GHS) in South Africa. We also assess the contribution of observed characteristics in explaining those differentials. We find that the gender gap in health narrowed by approximately 2% between 2005 and 2014, and the narrowing of that gap can be mainly attributed to changes in educational attainment and social grant receipt. Specifically, there has been a relative increase in receipt of formal education by women, which explains about 1.11% of the gap reduction, while the relative increase in social grant receipt by women explains approximately 28% of the reduction. Thus, improvements in gender equality, as it relates to health, are furthered by policies addressing inequality in educational attainment and social protection. However, about 76% of the reduction is explained by changes in returns to various male/female attributes.
    Date: 2017–03
  3. By: Michael J. Kottelenberg; Steven F. Lehrer
    Abstract: Although an increasing body of research promotes the development of universal early education and care programs, little is known about the extent to which these programs affect gender gaps in academic achievement and other developmental outcomes. Analyzing the introduction of universal highly-subsidized child care in Quebec, we first demonstrate that there are no statistically significant gender differences in the average effect of access to universal child care on child outcomes. However, we find substantial heterogeneity in policy impacts on the variance of developmental and behavioral scores across genders. Additionally, our analysis reveals significant evidence of differential parenting practices by gender in response to the introduction of the policy. The analysis is suggestive that the availability of subsidized child care changed home environments disproportionately, and may be responsible for the growing gender gaps in behavioral outcomes observed after child care is subsidized.
    JEL: I28 J13 J16
    Date: 2017–03
  4. By: Nadir Altinok (University of Lorraine); Abdurrahman Aydemir
    Abstract: The gender gap in education against females becomes smaller as the level of development increases and turns in their favor in developed countries. Through analysis of regional variation in the gender gap within Turkey, which displays a similar pattern to the cross-country pattern, this paper studies the factors that lead to the emergence of a gender gap against females. The data for student achievement and aspirations for further education during compulsory school show that females are just as well prepared and motivated for further education as their male counterparts across regions with very different levels of development. Despite this fact, large gaps arise in high school registration and completion in less developed regions, but not in developed ones. We find that larger sibship size is the main driver of gender gaps in less developed regions. While social norms have a negative influence on female education beyond compulsory school, they play a relatively small role in the emergence of gender gaps. These results are consistent with the fact that resource-constrained families give priority to males for further education, leading to the emergence of education gender gaps.
    Date: 2015–08
  5. By: Rana Hendy (Economic Research Forum)
    Abstract: This paper examines the reasons for the persistently low participation of women in the Egyptian labor market over time and across the different economic sectors, using the Egypt Labor Market Panel Survey (ELMPS) 2012. This panel dataset allows for an examination of the period leading up to and including the revolution, as it covers three different points in time: 1998, 2006 and 2012. Despite the remarkable increase in women’s educational attainment, which has become higher for women than their male counterparts, participation in the labor market remains relatively low. Confirming widespread opinion, the findings indicate that the January 25 Revolution has had a negative effect on women’s status in the labor market. Labor force participation has decreased, and unemployment has increased. It is thus important to analyze the different determinants of low female labor force participation. These include factors related to the supply of female labor, relating to family circumstances such as marriage, fertility and time use, women’s preferences and reservation wages; as well as the factors related to the demand side, such as the shrinking public sector and discrimination in the private sector.
    Date: 2015–05
  6. By: Claudia Olivetti; Barbara Petrongolo
    Abstract: By the early 21st century, most high-income countries have put into effect a host of generous and virtually gender-neutral parental leave policies and family benefits, with the multiple goals of gender equity, higher fertility, and child development. What have been the effects? Proponents typically emphasize the contribution of family policies to the goals of gender equity and child development, enabling women to combine careers and motherhood, and altering social norms regarding gender roles. Opponents often warn that family policies may become a long-term hindrance to women's careers because of the loss of work experience and the higher costs to employers that hire women of childbearing age. We draw lessons from existing work and our own analysis on the effects of parental leave and other interventions aimed at aiding families. We present country- and micro-level evidence on the effects of family policy on gender outcomes, focusing on female employment, gender gaps in earnings, and fertility. Most estimates range from negligible to a small positive impact. But the verdict is far more positive for the beneficial impact of spending on early education and childcare.
    JEL: J12 J13 J16 J18 N30 N40
    Date: 2017
  7. By: Stephanie Lluis (Department of Economics, University of Waterloo); Brian McCall (University of Michigan)
    Abstract: We apply a difference-in-differences estimation approach to analyze the effect of four Employment Insurance program initiatives which took place between 2004 and 2009 in a subset of Canadian Employment Insurance regions. The pilots increased the generosity of the EI system regarding EI eligibility, benefit amount, benefit duration and the allowable earning criteria. These pilots were run in about 50% of the EI regions until August 2008 providing a quasi-experimental setting to analyze the impact of increased generosity of EI on labour market outcomes. We use the Labour Force Survey data to study the aggregate impact of the four pilots on monthly labour force transitions into employment, unemployment and nonemployment as well as job search behaviour.
    JEL: J62 J65
    Date: 2017–01

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