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“Schooling Can’t Buy Me Love†: Marriage, Work, and the Gender Education Gap in Latin America

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  • Ganguli, Ina
  • Hausmann, Ricardo
  • Viarengo, Martina

Abstract

In this paper we establish six stylized facts related to marriage and work in Latin America and present a simple model to account for them. First, skilled women are less likely to be married than unskilled women. Second, skilled women are less likely to be married than skilled men. Third, married skilled men are more likely to work than unmarried skilled men, but married skilled women are less likely to work than unmarried skilled women. Fourth, Latin American women are much more likely to marry a less skilled husband compared to women in other regions of the world. Five, when a skilled Latin American woman marries down, she is more likely to work than if she marries a more or equally educated man. Six, when a woman marries down, she tends to marry the “better†men in that these are men that earn higher wages than those explained by the other observable characteristics. We present a simple game theoretic model that explains these facts with a single assumption: Latin American men, but not women, assign a greater value to having a stay-home wife.

Suggested Citation

  • Ganguli, Ina & Hausmann, Ricardo & Viarengo, Martina, 2010. "“Schooling Can’t Buy Me Love†: Marriage, Work, and the Gender Education Gap in Latin America," Scholarly Articles 4448873, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
  • Handle: RePEc:hrv:hksfac:4448873
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    1. Annamaria Lusardi & Olivia S. Mitchell, 2008. "Planning and Financial Literacy: How Do Women Fare?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 413-417, May.
    2. Bertocchi, Graziella & Brunetti, Marianna & Torricelli, Costanza, 2011. "Marriage and other risky assets: A portfolio approach," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 35(11), pages 2902-2915, November.
    3. Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2007. "Marriage and Divorce: Changes and their Driving Forces," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 21(2), pages 27-52, Spring.
    4. S. Berninghaus & W. Güth, 2007. "Experimental Economics," Chapters,in: Elgar Companion to Neo-Schumpeterian Economics, chapter 66 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    5. Betsey Stevenson, 2008. "Divorce Law and Women's Labor Supply," NBER Working Papers 14346, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Psacharopoulos, George & Tzannatos, Zafiris, 1993. "Economic and Demographic Effects on Working Women in Latin America," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 6(4), pages 293-315, November.
    7. Imran Rasul, 2006. "Marriage Markets and Divorce Laws," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(1), pages 30-69, April.
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