Do Spouses Realise Cooperative Gains? Experimental Evidence from Rural Uganda

Posted: 25 Apr 2011 Last revised: 27 Apr 2011

See all articles by Vegard Iversen

Vegard Iversen

University of Manchester

Cecile Jackson

University of East Anglia (UEA)

Bereket Kebede

University of East Anglia - School of International Development and CBESS

Alistair Munro

National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); University of London, Royal Holloway College - Department of Economics

Arjan Verschoor

University of East Anglia (UEA)

Date Written: April 24, 2011

Abstract

We use experimental data from variants of public good games to test for household efficiency among married couples in rural Uganda. Spouses frequently do not maximise surplus from cooperation and perform better when women are in charge of allocating the common pool. Women contribute less to this household common pool than men and opportunism is widespread. These results cast doubts on many models of household decision making. Experimental results are correlated with socio-economic attributes and suggest that assortative matching improves household efficiency. Developing non-cooperative household models sensitive to the context-specificity of gender relations emerges as a promising future research agenda.

Keywords: household behaviour, cooperation, gender, experiments, Africa, Uganda

JEL Classification: D13, C93, D03

Suggested Citation

Iversen, Vegard and Jackson, Cecile and Kebede, Bereket and Munro, Alistair and Verschoor, Arjan, Do Spouses Realise Cooperative Gains? Experimental Evidence from Rural Uganda (April 24, 2011). World Development, Vol. 39, No. 4, 2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1821264

Vegard Iversen (Contact Author)

University of Manchester ( email )

Cecile Jackson

University of East Anglia (UEA) ( email )

Norwich Research Park
Norwich, Norfolk NR4 7TJ
United Kingdom

Bereket Kebede

University of East Anglia - School of International Development and CBESS ( email )

Norwich Research Park
Norwich, Norfolk NR4 7TJ
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/view/bereket-kebede/

Alistair Munro

National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS) ( email )

Tokyo
Japan

HOME PAGE: http://www.grips.ac.jp/

University of London, Royal Holloway College - Department of Economics ( email )

Royal Holloway College
Egham
Surrey, Surrey TW20 0EX
United Kingdom

Arjan Verschoor

University of East Anglia (UEA) ( email )

Norwich Research Park
Norwich, Norfolk NR4 7TJ
United Kingdom

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