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Parental Sex Selection and Gender Balance

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  • Bhaskar, Venkataraman

Abstract

We consider a society where parents prefer boys to girls, but also value grandchildren. Parental sex selection results in a biased sex ratio that is socially inefficient, due to a congestion externality in the marriage market. Improvements in selection techniques aggravate the inefficiency. These results are robust to allowing prices in the marriage market, if the market is subject to frictions. We extend the model to consider gender preferences which depend upon family composition, allowing us to examine the possible sex ratio effects of China's one-child policy, and the implications of choice in societies where family balancing considerations are paramount.

Suggested Citation

  • Bhaskar, Venkataraman, 2008. "Parental Sex Selection and Gender Balance," CEPR Discussion Papers 6876, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:6876
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    5. Angrist, Joshua D & Evans, William N, 1998. "Children and Their Parents' Labor Supply: Evidence from Exogenous Variation in Family Size," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 450-477, June.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    congestion externality; gender bias; marriage market; sex ratio; sex selection;

    JEL classification:

    • 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
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

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