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Gender differences in risk attitudes: Field experiments on the matrilineal Mosuo and the patriarchal Yi

  • Gong, Binglin
  • Yang, Chun-Lei
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    We conduct experiments on two different risk tasks with subjects from two neighboring ethnic groups, the matrilineal Mosuo and the patriarchal Yi in China. Women are more risk averse than men at both tasks within both ethnic groups. However, the gender gap is smaller in the Mosuo. Regressions show that socio-economic factors such as family size, family head, education, age, and income also have significant effects on subject's risk choices.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization.

    Volume (Year): 83 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 59-65

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:83:y:2012:i:1:p:59-65
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2011.06.010
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    1. Juan Camilo Cárdenasl & Anna Dreber & Emma von Essen & Eva Ranehill, 2010. "Gender Differences in Competitiveness and Risk Taking: Comparing Children in Colombia and Sweden," DOCUMENTOS CEDE 007719, UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE.
    2. Charles A. Holt & Susan K. Laury, 2002. "Risk Aversion and Incentive Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1644-1655, December.
    3. Uri Gneezy & Kenneth L. Leonard & John A. List, 2009. "Gender Differences in Competition: Evidence From a Matrilineal and a Patriarchal Society," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 77(5), pages 1637-1664, 09.
    4. Gneezy, U. & Potters, J.J.M., 1996. "An experiment on risk taking and evaluation periods," Discussion Paper 1996-61, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    5. Muriel Niederle & Lise Vesterlund, 2007. "Do Women Shy Away From Competition? Do Men Compete Too Much?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1067-1101.
    6. Renate Schubert, 1999. "Financial Decision-Making: Are Women Really More Risk-Averse?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 381-385, May.
    7. Joseph Henrich & Richard McElreath, 2002. "Are peasants risk-averse decision makers?," Artefactual Field Experiments 00066, The Field Experiments Website.
    8. Catherine C. Eckel & Philip J. Grossman, 2008. "Sex and Risk: Experimental Evidence," Monash Economics Working Papers archive-09, Monash University, Department of Economics.
    9. Rachel Croson & Uri Gneezy, 2009. "Gender Differences in Preferences," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(2), pages 448-74, June.
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