IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Editor's Choice Gender of Siblings and Choice of College Major


  • Massimo Anelli
  • Giovanni Peri


In this study, we analyze whether the gender of a student’s siblings affects the choice of college major. A family with same-gender siblings may encourage academic choices that are less gender stereotyped. We use a unique dataset covering 30,000 Italian students who graduated from high school between 1985 and 2005 that allows us to identify siblings. We follow their academic careers from high school to college graduation. We find that mixed-gender siblings tend to choose college majors following a stronger gender-stereotypical specialization: males have higher probability of choosing ‘male dominated’ majors such as Engineering and Economics. Same-gender siblings, on the other hand, have higher probability of making non-gender-stereotypical choices. This college major choice is not driven by the choice of high school academic curriculum, which appears to be mainly function of geographical proximity to schools. (JEL codes: I21, J12, J16, Z18).

Suggested Citation

  • Massimo Anelli & Giovanni Peri, 2015. "Editor's Choice Gender of Siblings and Choice of College Major," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 61(1), pages 53-71.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:cesifo:v:61:y:2015:i:1:p:53-71.

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Pierre Picard, 2008. "Natural Disaster Insurance and the Equity-Efficiency Trade-Off," Journal of Risk & Insurance, The American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 75(1), pages 17-38.
    2. Steven Shavell, 1979. "Risk Sharing and Incentives in the Principal and Agent Relationship," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 10(1), pages 55-73, Spring.
    3. Lockwood, Ben, 1999. "Inter-regional insurance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 1-37, April.
    4. David J Hofman & Patricia A Brukoff, 2006. "Insuring Public Finances Against Natural Disasters; A Survey of Options and Recent Initiatives," IMF Working Papers 06/199, International Monetary Fund.
    5. Timothy Goodspeed & Andrew Haughwout, 2012. "On the optimal design of disaster insurance in a federation," Economics of Governance, Springer, vol. 13(1), pages 1-27, March.
    6. Fredrik Carlsson & Dinky Daruvala & Olof Johansson-Stenman, 2005. "Are People Inequality-Averse, or Just Risk-Averse?," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 72(3), pages 375-396, August.
    7. Arrow, Kenneth J & Lind, Robert C, 1970. "Uncertainty and the Evaluation of Public Investment Decisions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(3), pages 364-378, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


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

    Cited by:

    1. repec:taf:apeclt:v:24:y:2017:i:19:p:1369-1373 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Laura Cyron & Guido Schwerdt & Martina Viarengo, 2017. "The effect of opposite sex siblings on cognitive and noncognitive skills in early childhood," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(19), pages 1369-1373, November.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • Z18 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Public Policy


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:cesifo:v:61:y:2015:i:1:p:53-71.. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Oxford University Press) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.