DP10434 Technology and the Changing Family: A Unified Model of Marriage, Divorce, Educational Attainment and Married Female Labor-Force Participation

Author(s): Jeremy Greenwood, Nezih Guner, Georgi Kocharkov, Cezar Santos
Publication Date: February 2015
Keyword(s): assortative mating, education, household production, inequality, marriage and divorce, married female labour supply
JEL(s): E13, J12, J22, O11
Programme Areas: International Macroeconomics, Labour Economics
Link to this Page: www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=10434

Marriage has declined since 1960, with the drop being bigger for non-college educated individuals versus college educated ones. Divorce has increased, more so for the non-college educated. Additionally, positive assortative mating has risen. Income inequality among households has also widened. A unified model of marriage, divorce, educational attainment and married female labor-force participation is developed and estimated to fit the postwar U.S. data. Two underlying driving forces are considered: technological progress in the household sector and shifts in the wage structure. The analysis emphasizes the joint role that educational attainment, married female labor-force participation, and assortative mating play in determining income inequality.