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The Gender Gap

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  • Graciela Chichilnisky

Abstract

The author explains the "gender gap" as a Nash equilibrium of a game with incomplete information about women's work at home and in the marketplace. Expectations about women's lower wages leads to the overutilization of women in the household, and this, in turn, leads to lower productivity and lower wages for women in the marketplace. The situation is rational but generally Pareto inferior. With logistic learning by doing, at high levels of skill there is a Pareto-superior equilibrium, where men and women share efforts equally at home and receive the same pay in the marketplace, firms enhance their profits, and there is more welfare at home. Inequity at home breeds inequity in the marketplace and, reciprocally, inequity in the marketplace leads to inequity at home, causing a persistent gender gap. Appropriate contracts may be needed to implement the superior solution, since generally governments do not intervene in family matters. Copyright � 2008 The Author. Journal compilation � 2008 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Review of Development Economics.

Volume (Year): 12 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
Pages: 828-844

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Handle: RePEc:bla:rdevec:v:12:y:2008:i:4:p:828-844

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Web page: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=1363-6669

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Cited by:
  1. Pierre-Andre Chiappori & Yoram Weiss & Murat Iyigun & Yoram Weiss, 2006. "Investment in Schooling and the Marriage Market," 2006 Meeting Papers 43, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Pierre-Richard Agénor & Baris Alpaslan, 2013. "Child Labor, Intra-Household Bargaining and Economic Growth," Centre for Growth and Business Cycle Research Discussion Paper Series 181, Economics, The Univeristy of Manchester.
  3. Magali Recoules, 2011. "How can gender discrimination explain fertility behaviors and family-friendly policies?," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 9(4), pages 505-521, December.
  4. Agenor, Pierre-Richard & Canuto, Otaviano, 2013. "Gender equality and economic growth in Brazil : a long-run analysis," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6348, The World Bank.

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