Differences between sons and daughters in the intergenerational transmission of wealth

Monique Borgerhoff Mulder, Mary C. Towner, Ryan Baldini, Bret A. Beheim, Samuel Bowles, Heidi Colleran, Michael Gurven, Karen L. Kramer, Siobhán M. Mattison, David A. Nolin, Brooke A. Scelza, Eric Schniter, Rebecca Sear, Mary K. Shenk, Eckart Voland, John Ziker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Persistent interest lies in gender inequality, especially with regard to the favouring of sons over daughters. Economists are concerned with how privilege is transmitted across generations, and anthropologists have long studied sex-biased inheritance norms. There has, however, been no focused cross-cultural investigation of how parent-offspring correlations in wealth vary by offspring sex. We estimate these correlations for 38 wealth measures, including somatic and relational wealth, from 15 populations ranging from hunter-gatherers to small-scale farmers. Although small sample sizes limit our statistical power, we find no evidence of ubiquitous male bias, at least as inferred from comparing parent-son and parent-daughter correlations. Rather we find wide variation in signatures of sex bias, with evidence of both son and daughter-biased transmission. Further, we introduce a model that helps pinpoint the conditions under which simple mid-point parent-offspring wealth correlations can reveal information about sex-biased parental investment. Our findings are relevant to the study of female-biased kinship by revealing just how little normative descriptors of kinship systems, such as patrilineal inheritance, capture intergenerational correlations in wealth, and how variable parent-son and parent-daughter correlations can be. This article is part of the theme issue 'The evolution of female-biased kinship in humans and other mammals'.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number20180076
JournalPhilosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume374
Issue number1780
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2 2019

Fingerprint

Mammals
Nuclear Family
kinship
gender
inheritance (genetics)
economists
Sexism
Sample Size
mammals
farmers

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

Cite this

Mulder, M. B., Towner, M. C., Baldini, R., Beheim, B. A., Bowles, S., Colleran, H., ... Ziker, J. (2019). Differences between sons and daughters in the intergenerational transmission of wealth. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 374(1780), [20180076]. https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2018.0076
Mulder, Monique Borgerhoff ; Towner, Mary C. ; Baldini, Ryan ; Beheim, Bret A. ; Bowles, Samuel ; Colleran, Heidi ; Gurven, Michael ; Kramer, Karen L. ; Mattison, Siobhán M. ; Nolin, David A. ; Scelza, Brooke A. ; Schniter, Eric ; Sear, Rebecca ; Shenk, Mary K. ; Voland, Eckart ; Ziker, John. / Differences between sons and daughters in the intergenerational transmission of wealth. In: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 2019 ; Vol. 374, No. 1780.
@article{109c876e6a174b68a3b92a3e1dca06d9,
title = "Differences between sons and daughters in the intergenerational transmission of wealth",
abstract = "Persistent interest lies in gender inequality, especially with regard to the favouring of sons over daughters. Economists are concerned with how privilege is transmitted across generations, and anthropologists have long studied sex-biased inheritance norms. There has, however, been no focused cross-cultural investigation of how parent-offspring correlations in wealth vary by offspring sex. We estimate these correlations for 38 wealth measures, including somatic and relational wealth, from 15 populations ranging from hunter-gatherers to small-scale farmers. Although small sample sizes limit our statistical power, we find no evidence of ubiquitous male bias, at least as inferred from comparing parent-son and parent-daughter correlations. Rather we find wide variation in signatures of sex bias, with evidence of both son and daughter-biased transmission. Further, we introduce a model that helps pinpoint the conditions under which simple mid-point parent-offspring wealth correlations can reveal information about sex-biased parental investment. Our findings are relevant to the study of female-biased kinship by revealing just how little normative descriptors of kinship systems, such as patrilineal inheritance, capture intergenerational correlations in wealth, and how variable parent-son and parent-daughter correlations can be. This article is part of the theme issue 'The evolution of female-biased kinship in humans and other mammals'.",
author = "Mulder, {Monique Borgerhoff} and Towner, {Mary C.} and Ryan Baldini and Beheim, {Bret A.} and Samuel Bowles and Heidi Colleran and Michael Gurven and Kramer, {Karen L.} and Mattison, {Siobh{\'a}n M.} and Nolin, {David A.} and Scelza, {Brooke A.} and Eric Schniter and Rebecca Sear and Shenk, {Mary K.} and Eckart Voland and John Ziker",
year = "2019",
month = "9",
day = "2",
doi = "10.1098/rstb.2018.0076",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "374",
journal = "Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences",
issn = "0962-8436",
publisher = "Royal Society of London",
number = "1780",

}

Mulder, MB, Towner, MC, Baldini, R, Beheim, BA, Bowles, S, Colleran, H, Gurven, M, Kramer, KL, Mattison, SM, Nolin, DA, Scelza, BA, Schniter, E, Sear, R, Shenk, MK, Voland, E & Ziker, J 2019, 'Differences between sons and daughters in the intergenerational transmission of wealth', Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, vol. 374, no. 1780, 20180076. https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2018.0076

Differences between sons and daughters in the intergenerational transmission of wealth. / Mulder, Monique Borgerhoff; Towner, Mary C.; Baldini, Ryan; Beheim, Bret A.; Bowles, Samuel; Colleran, Heidi; Gurven, Michael; Kramer, Karen L.; Mattison, Siobhán M.; Nolin, David A.; Scelza, Brooke A.; Schniter, Eric; Sear, Rebecca; Shenk, Mary K.; Voland, Eckart; Ziker, John.

In: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Vol. 374, No. 1780, 20180076, 02.09.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Differences between sons and daughters in the intergenerational transmission of wealth

AU - Mulder, Monique Borgerhoff

AU - Towner, Mary C.

AU - Baldini, Ryan

AU - Beheim, Bret A.

AU - Bowles, Samuel

AU - Colleran, Heidi

AU - Gurven, Michael

AU - Kramer, Karen L.

AU - Mattison, Siobhán M.

AU - Nolin, David A.

AU - Scelza, Brooke A.

AU - Schniter, Eric

AU - Sear, Rebecca

AU - Shenk, Mary K.

AU - Voland, Eckart

AU - Ziker, John

PY - 2019/9/2

Y1 - 2019/9/2

N2 - Persistent interest lies in gender inequality, especially with regard to the favouring of sons over daughters. Economists are concerned with how privilege is transmitted across generations, and anthropologists have long studied sex-biased inheritance norms. There has, however, been no focused cross-cultural investigation of how parent-offspring correlations in wealth vary by offspring sex. We estimate these correlations for 38 wealth measures, including somatic and relational wealth, from 15 populations ranging from hunter-gatherers to small-scale farmers. Although small sample sizes limit our statistical power, we find no evidence of ubiquitous male bias, at least as inferred from comparing parent-son and parent-daughter correlations. Rather we find wide variation in signatures of sex bias, with evidence of both son and daughter-biased transmission. Further, we introduce a model that helps pinpoint the conditions under which simple mid-point parent-offspring wealth correlations can reveal information about sex-biased parental investment. Our findings are relevant to the study of female-biased kinship by revealing just how little normative descriptors of kinship systems, such as patrilineal inheritance, capture intergenerational correlations in wealth, and how variable parent-son and parent-daughter correlations can be. This article is part of the theme issue 'The evolution of female-biased kinship in humans and other mammals'.

AB - Persistent interest lies in gender inequality, especially with regard to the favouring of sons over daughters. Economists are concerned with how privilege is transmitted across generations, and anthropologists have long studied sex-biased inheritance norms. There has, however, been no focused cross-cultural investigation of how parent-offspring correlations in wealth vary by offspring sex. We estimate these correlations for 38 wealth measures, including somatic and relational wealth, from 15 populations ranging from hunter-gatherers to small-scale farmers. Although small sample sizes limit our statistical power, we find no evidence of ubiquitous male bias, at least as inferred from comparing parent-son and parent-daughter correlations. Rather we find wide variation in signatures of sex bias, with evidence of both son and daughter-biased transmission. Further, we introduce a model that helps pinpoint the conditions under which simple mid-point parent-offspring wealth correlations can reveal information about sex-biased parental investment. Our findings are relevant to the study of female-biased kinship by revealing just how little normative descriptors of kinship systems, such as patrilineal inheritance, capture intergenerational correlations in wealth, and how variable parent-son and parent-daughter correlations can be. This article is part of the theme issue 'The evolution of female-biased kinship in humans and other mammals'.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85069827519&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85069827519&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1098/rstb.2018.0076

DO - 10.1098/rstb.2018.0076

M3 - Article

C2 - 31303159

AN - SCOPUS:85069827519

VL - 374

JO - Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

JF - Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

SN - 0962-8436

IS - 1780

M1 - 20180076

ER -