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Please, Marry Me! An Experimental Study of Risking a Joint Venture


  • Werner Guth
  • Radosveta Ivanova-Stenzel
  • Sigve Tjotta


Empirical studies in family economics usually rely on questionnaires, statistical data or panel data. Here we try to study experimentally some crucial aspects of engaging in a marriage. The female partner can end the relationship or suggest one of two forms of joint venture where more labor division makes her more exploitable by her partner. More specifically, the random profit of the joint venture is allocated by ultimatum bargaining in the case of a full engagement whereas marriage bargaining is procedurally fair in the case of a low engagement. Our treatment variables are her and his outside options representing different attitudes to investing in human capital. Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2004.

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  • Werner Guth & Radosveta Ivanova-Stenzel & Sigve Tjotta, 2004. "Please, Marry Me! An Experimental Study of Risking a Joint Venture," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(1), pages 1-21, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:metroe:v:55:y:2004:i:1:p:1-21

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    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Smith, Ian, 2007. "Property division on divorce with inequity aversion," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 111-128.
    2. Schröder, Melanie & Schmitt, Norma & Mantei, Britta & Brünn, Claudia, 2014. "Social Norms or Income Taxation - What Drives Couple's Labor Supply? Experimental Evidence," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100375, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    3. Werner Güth & Radosveta Ivanova-Stenzel & Matthias Sutter & Hannelore Weck-Hannemann, 2003. "Investment and Bargaining in Joint Ventures: A Family Decision Making Experiment," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 159(2), pages 323-323, June.
    4. Schröder, Melanie & Schmitt, Norma & Heynemann, Britta & Brünn, Claudia, 2013. "Income Taxation and Labor Supply: An Experiment on Couple's Work Effort," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79735, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    5. Vital Anderhuba & Dennis A. V. Dittrich & Werner Güth & Nadege Marchandd, "undated". "Interpersonal allocation behavior in a household saving experiment," Papers on Strategic Interaction 2002-02, Max Planck Institute of Economics, Strategic Interaction Group.
    6. Hannelore Weck-Hannemann, 2000. "Frauen in der Ökonomie und Frauenökonomik: Zur Erklärung geschlechtsspezifischer Unterschiede in der Wirtschaft und in den Wirtschaftswissenschaften," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 1(2), pages 199-220, May.
    7. Melanie Schröder & Norma Burow, 2016. "Couple's Labor Supply, Taxes, and the Division of Housework in a Gender-Neutral Lab," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1593, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • C90 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - General


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