Macro-JI Seminars - Markus Poschke

17 May 2022
3.30pm - 5.00pm
Meade Room - Hybrid Event

Markus Poschke (Visiting Academic, Oxford University; McGill University)

Title: "Gender, Work, and Structural Transformation (joint with Cheryl Doss, Douglas Gollin, and Charles Gottlieb)" 

Abstract: We build a Harmonized World Labor Force and Time Use Survey to document patterns of market and home work across the development spectrum, paying particular attention to the ways in which single and married men and women supply labor to different sectors of the economy. We show that (1) structural change out of agriculture is driven by the movement of entire households, and not just individuals, (2) patterns of market vs home work differ significantly by gender and marital status, with particularly low market relative to home work by married urban women in low income countries and married women in middle income countries, and that (3) female employment rates in a country affect male choices of sector and location. Guided by these facts, we write down a two sector model with home production and heterogeneous households that differ by marital status and sex. We use the model to transparently infer determinants of market and home work by marital status, sex, and sector. This reveals that low market work of urban married women in low income countries reflects particularly high isutility of market work for this group. Model simulations suggest that reducing this disutility to that of rural married women would reduce agricultural employment and change the population composition of cities. Hence, barriers to female urban employment can hold back structural change.


Markus Poschke