Exploring the relationship between parents’ and children’s housework time in Spain
- 462 Downloads
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 between parents’ and children’s housework allocation patterns. We propose a simple theoretical model that predicts that parents with a strong adherence to gender to traditional gender norms—as proxied by their division of household labor—are more likely to allocate housework to children in a way that reflects stereotypes of men’s and women’s domestic tasks. The empirical application is carried out with data from the 2002–2003 Spanish Time Use Survey. The sample restricts to two-parent households with at least one child aged 10–17 years. We find a significant positive correlation between a more egalitarian parents’ allocation of housework and a less asymmetrical distribution of domestic chores between sons and daughters.
KeywordsTime allocation Gender identity Social norms Intergenerational transmission
JEL CodesJ16 J22 C35
Financial support from the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation grant no. ECO2008-05771 and from Consellería de Innovación e Industria (Xunta de Galicia) grant no. PGIDIT06PXIB300217PR is gratefully acknowledged.
- Akerlof, G. A., & Kranton, R. E. (2010). Identity economics. How identity shape our work, wages and well-being. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
- Alesina, A., & Giuliano P. (2007). The power of the family, NBER Working Paper No. 13051.Google Scholar
- Bonke, J. (1995). Education, work, and gender: An international comparison. European University Institute. Working paper, EUF 95/4.Google Scholar
- Bonke, J. (2010). Children’s housework–Are girls more active than boys? Electronic International Journal of Time Use Research, 70(1), 1–16.Google Scholar
- Bowles, S. (1998). Endogenous preferences: The cultural consequences of markets and other economic institutions. Journal of Economic Literature, XXXVI(March), 75–111.Google Scholar
- Bowles, S. (2007). Microeconomics: Behavior, institution and evolution. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
- Eurostat. (2008). The life of women and men in Europe. A statistical portrait. Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities.Google Scholar
- Fernández, R., & Fogli A. (2005). Culture: An empirical investigation of beliefs, work, and fertility, NBER Working Paper No. 11268.Google Scholar
- Lundberg, S., Pabilonia S. & Ward-Watts J. (2007). Time allocation of parents and investments in sons and daughters. Working Paper. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.Google Scholar
- United Nations Millennium Project (2004). From promises to action: Recommendations for gender equality and empowerment of women. Task Force 3 Interim Report on Gender Equality. http://www.unmillenniumproject.org/documents/tf3genderinterim.pdf. Accessed 4 September 2009.