Gender, Social Norms and Household Production in Burkina Faso

H. Kazianga, Zaki Wahhaj

Research output: Working paper


Using a survey of agricultural households in Burkina Faso, we provide evidence that plots owned by the head of the household is farmed much more intensively than plots, with similar characteristics and planted to the same crops, owned by other household members (of both genders). As in previous studies, this evidence is inconsistent with the assumption of Pareto efficiency in household decisions, but additionally suggests that status within the household rather than gender per se may be the most important factor in determining the allocation of productive resources within the household. We argue that the higher yields achieved by the household head may be explained in terms of social norms that require him to spend the earnings from some farms under his control exclusively on household public goods, as has been observed in the anthropological literature on this region.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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