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Building gender roles: Do children learn from their parents?

  • Begoña Álvarez
  • Daniel Miles

Intergenerational transmission has been successfully employed in economic research to explain the persistence of certain economic behaviors across generations. This paper evaluates the relevance of this transmission process in the formation of gender roles during childhood. In particular, we analyze the relationship betwen parents’ and children’s housework allocation patterns. The empirical application is carried out with the Spanish Time Use Survey 2002—2003. We find a significant positive correlation between the fathers’ contribution to housework and a less asymmetrical distribution of domestic chores between sons and daughters. This correlation is robust to the inclusion of variables aimed at capturing social externalities and also to different definitions of father’s involvement with household labor.

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Paper provided by Universidade de Vigo, Departamento de Economía Aplicada in its series Working Papers with number 0906.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:vig:wpaper:0906
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Web page: http://webx06.webs.uvigo.es/
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  1. Bonke, J., 1995. "Education, Work and Gender, An International Comparison," Papers 95/4, European Institute - European Forum.
  2. Raquel Fernández, 2007. "Alfred Marshall Lecture Women, Work, and Culture," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 5(2-3), pages 305-332, 04-05.
  3. Fernandez, Cristina & Sevilla-Sanz, Almudena, 2006. "Social norms and household time allocation," IESE Research Papers D/648, IESE Business School.
  4. Maria L. Loureiro & Anna Sanz-de-Galdeano & Daniela Vuri, 2009. "Smoking Habits: Like Father, Like Son, Like Mother, Like Daughter," CESifo Working Paper Series 2782, CESifo Group Munich.
  5. Antoni Calvó-Armengol & Matthew O. Jackson, 2009. "Like Father, Like Son: Social Network Externalities and Parent-Child Correlation in Behavior," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 124-50, February.
  6. Shelly Lundberg, 2005. "Sons, Daughters, and Parental Behaviour," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(3), pages 340-356, Autumn.
  7. Begoña Alvarez & Daniel Miles, . "Gender Effect on Housework Allocation: Evidence from Spanish Two-Earner Couples," Studies on the Spanish Economy 114, FEDEA.
  8. Booth, Alison L. & Kee, Hiau Joo, 2006. "Intergenerational Transmission of Fertility Patterns in Britain," IZA Discussion Papers 2437, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Kerwin Kofi Charles & Erik Hurst, 2003. "The Correlation of Wealth across Generations," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(6), pages 1155-1182, December.
  10. Ruhm, Christopher J., 2008. "Maternal employment and adolescent development," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(5), pages 958-983, October.
  11. Patricia M. Anderson & Kristin F. Butcher & Phillip B. Levine, 2002. "Maternal Employment and Overweight Children," NBER Working Papers 8770, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Raquel Fernandez & Alessandra Fogli, 2005. "Culture: an empirical investigation of beliefs, work, and fertility," Staff Report 361, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  13. Fogli, Alessandra & Veldkamp, Laura, 2007. "Nature or Nurture? Learning and Female Labour Force Dynamics," CEPR Discussion Papers 6324, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  14. Alesina, Alberto & Giuliano, Paola, 2007. "The Power of the Family," IZA Discussion Papers 2750, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  15. Patacchini, Eleonora & Zenou, Yves, 2004. "Intergenerational Education Transmission: Neighbourhood Quality and/or Parents' Involvement," CEPR Discussion Papers 4744, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Christian Bantle & John P. Haisken-DeNew, 2002. "Smoke Signals: The Intergenerational Transmission of Smoking Behavior," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 277, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  17. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics And Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753, August.
  18. Kooreman, Peter, 2003. "Time, Money, Peers, and Parents: Some Data and Theories on Teenage Behavior," IZA Discussion Papers 931, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  19. Raquel Fernández & Alessandra Fogli & Claudia Olivetti, 2004. "Mothers and Sons: Preference Formation and Female Labor Force Dynamics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(4), pages 1249-1299, November.
  20. Samuel Bowles, 1998. "Endogenous Preferences: The Cultural Consequences of Markets and Other Economic Institutions," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(1), pages 75-111, March.
  21. Kooreman, P., 2007. "Time, money, peers, and parents : Some data and theories on teenage behavior," Other publications TiSEM 05026f0a-e418-4eb8-a483-7, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
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