Small Business Economics

, Volume 13, Issue 4, pp 317–329 | Cite as

Do Husbands Matter? Married Women Entering Self-Employment

  • Donald Bruce


This paper investigates the effect of a husband's self-employment experience on the probability that his wife will enter self-employment. Results suggest that having a husband with some exposure to self-employment nearly doubles the probability that a woman will become self-employed, all else equal. Further, the effect is found to be strongest if a woman's husband is actually self-employed at the time she is contemplating a transition. Having a husband with prior self-employment experience also has an important yet quantitatively smaller effect. A series of robustness checks suggest that family businesses and assortative mating only partially explain this large effect. Intrahousehold transfers of human (and, to a much lesser degree, financial) capital might also play a role.


Industrial Organization Robustness Check Family Business Assortative Mating Marry Woman 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald Bruce
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Business and Economic Research and Department of EconomicsUniversity of TennesseeKnoxvilleU.S.A

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