The Legacy of the Missing Men: The Long-Run Impact of World War I on Female Labor Force Participation
45 Pages Posted: 14 Nov 2017 Last revised: 19 Apr 2019
Date Written: April 2019
This paper explores the pathways that underlie the diffusion of women's participation in the labor force across generations. I exploit a severe exogenous shock to the sex ratio, World War I in France, which generated a large inflow of women in the labor force after the war. I show that this shock to female labor transmitted to subsequent generations until today. Three mechanisms of intergenerational transmission account for this result: parental transmission, transmission through marriage, and transmission through local social interactions. Beyond behaviors, the war also permanently altered beliefs toward the role of women in the labor force.
JEL Classification: J16, J22, N34, Z13
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation