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Mothers, Peers, and Gender-Role Identity

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  • Claudia Olivetti
  • Eleonora Patacchini
  • Yves Zenou

Abstract

We study whether a woman’s labor supply as a young adult is shaped by the work behavior of her adolescent peers’ mothers. Using detailed information on a sample of U.S. teenagers who are followed over time, we find that labor force participation of high school peers’ mothers affects adult women’s labor force participation, above and beyond the effect of their own mothers. The analysis suggests that women who were exposed to a larger number of working mothers during adolescence are less likely to feel that work interferes with family responsibilities. This perception, in turn, is important for whether they work when they have children.

Suggested Citation

  • Claudia Olivetti & Eleonora Patacchini & Yves Zenou, 2020. "Mothers, Peers, and Gender-Role Identity," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 18(1), pages 266-301.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:jeurec:v:18:y:2020:i:1:p:266-301.
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    Cited by:

    1. Giulietti, Corrado & Vlassopoulos, Michael & Zenou, Yves, 2020. "Peers, Gender, and Long-Term Depression," GLO Discussion Paper Series 531, Global Labor Organization (GLO).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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