IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/tpr/jeurec/v4y2006i2-3p523-530.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Polygyny, Women's Rights, and Development

Author

Listed:
  • Michèle Tertilt

Abstract

Many Sub-Saharan African countries are extremely poor. It has been argued that the marriage system-in particular polygyny-is one contributing factor to the lack of development in this region. However, enforcing monogamy has proved to be very difficult. In this paper, I argue that transferring the right of choosing a husband from fathers to daughters might be an alternative policy that could potentially be easier to enforce. I use a calibrated general equilibrium model of polygyny to analyze such a policy. I find that giving daughters more choices has similar economic effects as a ban on polygyny. Both policies decrease the return on wives for men and thereby raise the incentive to invest in alternative assets. This increases the capital stock and hence GDP per capita. Quantitatively, however, I find that enforcing monogamy has much larger effects. (JEL: E0, O11, O55, J12, J13) (c) 2006 by the European Economic Association.

Suggested Citation

  • Michèle Tertilt, 2006. "Polygyny, Women's Rights, and Development," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(2-3), pages 523-530, 04-05.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:jeurec:v:4:y:2006:i:2-3:p:523-530
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/(ISSN)1542-4774/issues
    File Function: link to full text
    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.

    Citations

    Citations

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


    Cited by:

    1. Bandiera, Oriana. & Buehren, Niklas. & Burgess, Robin. & Goldstein, Markus. & Gulesci, Selim. & Rasul, Imran. & Sulaiman, Munshi., 2015. "Women’s economic empowerment in action : evidence from a randomized control trial in Africa," ILO Working Papers 994874053402676, International Labour Organization.
    2. Lucia Corno & Alessandra Voena, 2015. "Selling Daughters: Age of Marriage, Income Shocks and Bride Price Tradition," Study Papers 84, Rockwool Foundation Research Unit.
    3. Oriana Bandiera & Niklas Buehren & Robin Burgess & Markus Goldstein & Selim Gulesci & Imran Rasul & Munshi Sulaiman, 2014. "Women's empowerment in action: Evidence from a randomized control trial in Africa," CSAE Working Paper Series 2014-30, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
    4. Todd Schoellman & Michèle Tertilt, 2006. "Marriage Laws and Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 295-298, May.
    5. Cahu, Paul & Fall, Falilou & Pongou, Roland, 2014. "Beauty, Polygyny, and Fertility: Theory and Evidence," MPRA Paper 59009, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Raquel Fernandez, 2010. "Women's Rights and Development," Working Papers 2011-029, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
    7. repec:pri:rpdevs:vogl_family_size is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Sadettin Citci, 2014. "The rise of monogamy," SERIEs: Journal of the Spanish Economic Association, Springer;Spanish Economic Association, vol. 5(4), pages 377-397, November.
    9. Gould, Eric D. & Moav, Omer & Simhon, Avi, 2012. "Lifestyles of the rich and polygynous in Cote d’Ivoire," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 115(3), pages 404-407.
    10. Kudo, Yuya, 2014. "Religion and polygamy : evidence from the livingstonia mission in Malawi," IDE Discussion Papers 477, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO).
    11. John T. Dalton & Tin Cheuk Leung, 2014. "Why Is Polygyny More Prevalent in Western Africa? An African Slave Trade Perspective," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 62(4), pages 599-632.
    12. Raquel Fernández, 2014. "Women’s rights and development," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 19(1), pages 37-80, March.
    13. repec:hal:journl:halshs-01130403 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Michèle Tertilt, 2012. "The Research Agenda: Michèle Tertilt on Gender in Macroeconomics," EconomicDynamics Newsletter, Review of Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(1), November.
    15. Oriana Bandiera & Niklas Buehren & Robin Burgess & Markus Goldstein & Selim Gulesci & Imran Rasul & Munshi Sulaiman, 2014. "Women's empowerment in action: Evidence from a randomized control trial in Africa," CSAE Working Paper Series 2014-30, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
    16. Lucia Corno & Alessandra Voena, 2016. "Selling daughters: age of marriage, income shocks and the bride price tradition," IFS Working Papers W16/08, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    17. Raquel Fernández, 2009. "Women's Rights and Development," NBER Working Papers 15355, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E0 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General
    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • O55 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Africa
    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    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:tpr:jeurec:v:4:y:2006:i:2-3:p:523-530. 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: (Kristin Waites). General contact details of provider: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/jeea .

    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.