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Efficiency versus Gender Roles and Stereotypes: An Experiment in Domestic Production

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  • Hélène Couprie
  • Elisabeth Cudeville
  • Catherine Sofer

    (Université de Cergy-Pontoise, THEMA)

Abstract

Empirical studies cast doubts upon the efficiency assumption made in standard economic models of household behavior. The allocation of time among men and women between market and household work is highly differentiated by gender. In this paper we examine whether couples deviate from efficiency in household production, using an experimental design. We compare the allocation of gendered vs. neutral tasks. Our results show that women in the household overspecialize in “feminine tasks” and men in “masculine tasks” compared to what their comparative advantage would require, hence revealing the influence of gender roles and stereotypes on the couples’ behavior.

Suggested Citation

  • Hélène Couprie & Elisabeth Cudeville & Catherine Sofer, 2017. "Efficiency versus Gender Roles and Stereotypes: An Experiment in Domestic Production," THEMA Working Papers 2017-10, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
  • Handle: RePEc:ema:worpap:2017-10
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    3. Masekesa, Faith & Munro, Alistair, 2020. "Intra-household inequality, fairness and productivity. Evidence from a real effort experiment," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 127(C).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Stereotypes; gender roles; household models; gender inequalities.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior

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