Changing families: How technological progress at home and the market place affect our lives
Nezih Guner (ICREA-MOVE, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona and Barcelona GSE)
Consider how different households in the U.S. and other industrialized countries look today relative to decades ago. First, a smaller proportion of the adult population is married today than it was in the past. A smaller number of people ever get married; if they do marry, they do so later in their lives; and they are more likely to divorce. The retreat from marriage was more dramatic for the less educated. There has also been an increase in assortative mating. Second, the amount of time allocated to market work by married households has increased markedly over the post-war period. This was critically driven by a rise in labor-force participation by married females. As a result, today’s households are very far from traditional breadwinner husband and housekeeper wife paradigm. We live in a different world. What are the economic forces behind this dramatic shift in household characteristics? People marry for both economic and non economic reasons: material well-being and love. On the material side of things, a woman’s labor is important for both home production and market production. Over time the value of a woman’s labor in household production has declined, due to technological progress in the household sector. At the same time, the value of a woman’s time in the market and her incentives to obtain education increased as a result of a lower gender wage gap and a higher skill premium. Therefore, love and the value of a woman’s labor on the market have come to play more important roles, relative to the value of a woman’s labor in home production, in the decision about whether or not to get married and whom to marry.
Measures of Rationality and Welfare for Behavioral Decision-Makers
Jose Apesteguia (ICREA, UPF and Barcelona GSE)
Mass Media and its Influence on Behavior
Ruben Enikolopov (IPEG, ICREA, UPF and Barcelona GSE) and Maria Petrova (IPEG, ICREA, UPF and Barcelona GSE)