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Empirical essays in experimental and labour economics

This dissertation consists of four independent research papers. All four papers include their own abstracts, introductions, references, and appendices, and can be read individually. The first paper of this dissertation (co-authored with Prof Manfred Königstein) is titled “Comparing Capitalism and Socialism: A Laboratory Experiment”. In this paper we compare a capitalist and socialist market in a laboratory experiment. We find that the socialist market reaches only about 75% efficiency whereas the capitalist market is near 100%. Paper 2 titled “Improving Efficiency in Socialism: A Laboratory Experiment” investigates the effect, political bias in the price-setting committee of a socialist market, has on market efficiency. The findings indicate that bias in the constitution of the price-setting committee affects trade price and profit distribution, but has no effect on efficiency and trade quantity. Paper 3 is titled “Female Labour Force Participation in Urban and Rural Cameroon: An Empirical Study”. This paper is motivated by the fact that, although there has been a huge number of studies done on the determinants of female labour force participation worldwide, to the best of my knowledge, only two has been done in Cameroon. Binomial logit regression analysis revealed that some of the statistically significant determinants of female labour force participation in urban and rural Cameroon are age, number of children in the household ages 5 and under, and region of residency. Marital status was also a key predictor in rural, but not urban Cameroon. The results also reveal that there is an urban/rural residency gap in female labour force participation. To explore this further I employ a decomposition analysis. The decomposition analysis reveals that only 36% of this difference is accounted for by differences in the characteristics of women in the urban compared to their counterparts in the rural areas. Paper 4 titled “Is Sibling Gender Composition a Good Instrumental Variable for Fertility in Cameroon?” seeks to determine if sibling gender composition is a good instrument for fertility in Cameroon. The result of this study shows that sibling gender composition is a poor instrument for fertility in Cameroon.


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