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Intrahousehold allocation and gender relations: new empirical evidence.

The paper reviews recent theory and empirical evidence testing unitary versus collective models of the household. In contrast to the unitary model, the collective model posits that individuals within households have different preferences and do not pool their income. Moreover, the collective model predicts thaintrahousehold allocations reflect differences in preferences and "bargaining power" of individuals within the household. Using new household data sets from Bangladesh, Indonesia, Ethiopia, and South Africa, we present measures of individual characteristics that are highly correlated with bargaining power, namely human capital and individually-controlled assets, evaluated at the time of marriage. In all the country case studies we reject the unitary model as a description of household behavior, but to different degrees. Results suggest that assets controlled by women have a positive and significant effect on expenditure allocations towards the next generation, such as education and children's clothing. We also examine individual-level education outcomes and find that parents do not have identical preferences towards sons and daughters within or across countries.

This work is supported by the World Bank and the Agency for International Developments Office of Women in Development, United States Agency for International Development, Office of Women in Development, Grant No. FAO-0100-G-00-5020-00, on "Strengthening Development Policy through Gender Analysis: An Integrated Multicountry Research Program." The paper draws on ongoing work witEBenedicte de la Briere, Marcel Fafchamps, Lawrence Haddad, Kelly Hallman, and Keijiro Otsuka. We would like to thank Chris Udry, Lyn Squire, Beth King, Andy Mason, and seminar participants at the World Bank and IFPRI for helpful comments. We also thank Ellen Payongayong, Oscar Neidecker-Gonzales, and Sanjukta Mukherjee for excellent research support.
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Publication:Intrahousehold Allocation and Gender Relations-New Empirical Evidence
Date:Oct 1, 1999
Previous Article:Policy research report on gender and development.
Next Article:I. Introduction.

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