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The Effects of Cohort Size on Marriage-Markets in Twentieth-Century Sweden

Publication Abstract

Bergstrom, Theodore, and David Lam. 1994. "The Effects of Cohort Size on Marriage-Markets in Twentieth-Century Sweden." In The Family, the Market, and the State in Ageing Societies edited by J. Ermisch and N. Ogawa. Oxford, UK: Clarendon Press.

The authors present an implementable general equilibrium model of marriage assignments, which can be used to predict the way in which marriage patterns adjust to change in the numbers of males and females in each cohort. The chapter begins with descriptive statistics of marriage patterns in twentieth-century Sweden, which are ideal for testing the assignment model because dramatic fluctuations in fertility in Sweden have created large differences in the sizes of male and female cohorts who would normally marry each other. The authors then outline their equilibrium theory of marriage assignment and compare actual marriage patterns with those predicted by a simple implementation of the model in determining the assignment of partners that maximizes the total pay-off from marriages in the population of men and women born in Sweden between 1895 and 1945.

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