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Behavioral Economics For Dummies® by Morris Altman, PhD

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Chapter 9

Why Gender, Children, and Age Matter for Economic Analysis

In This Chapter

arrow Understanding how gender affects decision making

arrow Recognizing the role that children’s preferences play in a household’s decisions

arrow Exploring the importance of aging to the choices people make

Women and men have different preferences on a variety of issues, and those preferences often result in different choices. But gender isn’t the only thing that affects preferences and choice — so do children and aging. Kids tend to have different preferences than adults do. And parents have different preferences than adults without kids do. Finally, some preferences change as people get older. You aren’t who you were in the past, nor are you today who you will become in the future. Preferences evolve over time, and economists need to incorporate this evolution into our simplifying assumptions of choice behavior.

In this chapter, I focus on how gender, children, and age affect preferences and choice.

How Gender Affects Choice

Conventional economics wisdom says that men and women have the same preferences. In other words, gender makes no difference to choice behavior. Conventional economics also assumes that men’s ...

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