Economics of the Family

The family is a complex decision unit in which partners with potentially different objectives make consumption, work and fertility decisions. Couples marry and divorce partly based on their ability to coordinate these activities, which in turn depends on how well they are matched. This book provides a comprehensive, modern and self-contained account of the research in the growing area of family economics. The first half of the book develops several alternative models of family decision making. Particular attention is paid to the collective model and its testable implications. The second half discusses household formation and dissolution and who marries whom. Matching models with and without frictions are analyzed and the important role of within-family transfers is explained. The implications for marriage, divorce and fertility are discussed. The book is intended for graduate students in economics and for researchers in other fields interested in the economic approach to the family.

About the Author

Martin Browning is Professor of Economics at the University of Oxford and the Director for the Center for Applied Microeconometrics in Copenhagen. He is a fellow of the Econometric Society, the European Economic Association, and the British Academy. Professor Browning was awarded the John Rae Prize in 1996. Pierre-Andre Chiappori is E. Rowan and Barbara Steinschneider Professor of Economics at Columbia University. He is a fellow of the Econometric Society, the European Economic Association, and the Society of Labor Economists. Professor Chiappori was awarded the Grand Prix Zerilli Marimo de l’Academie des sciences morales et politiques in 2010. Yoram Weiss is Professor Emeritus at Tel Aviv University. He is a former president of the Society of Labor Economists (2008) and a winner of the Mincer Prize for lifetime contributions to the field of labor economics (2009). Professor Weiss was editor of the Journal of Labor Economics from 1993 to 2005.

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