What do Women and Men Want? Investigating and Measuring Preference Heterogeneity for Life Outcomes using a Factorial Survey

Schunck R, Abendroth A, Diewald M, Melzer SM, Pausch S (2013) SFB 882 Working Paper Series; 20.
Bielefeld: DFG Research Center (SFB) 882 From Heterogeneities to Inequalities.

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Abstract
This paper highlights the relevance of preference heterogeneity for life outcomes. We propose using a factorial survey as a method to measure preferences. Factorial surveys comprise complex rating situations, encompassing trade-offs between dimensions, thus allowing inference of the relative importance attached to each dimension. Conceptualizing preferences as ratings given to a set of life course outcomes that result at least partly from our own behavior distinguishes preferences, on the one hand, from attitudes and values and, on the other hand, from situation-specific evaluations of concrete alternatives. We illustrate preference heterogeneity by investigating differences in the relevance of work and family outcomes to men’s and women’s life satisfaction. The results of our analyses (multilevel models) show that preference heterogeneity operationalized in this way does indeed exist between female and male respondents as regards having children, but not regarding labor market outcomes such as income or occupational prestige. The inclusion of preferences in social inequality research may advance our understanding of the emergence of inequalities, in particular as regards the question of whether observable inequalities between groups are the product of differences in preferences or differences in constraints and opportunities.
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Schunck R, Abendroth A, Diewald M, Melzer SM, Pausch S. What do Women and Men Want? Investigating and Measuring Preference Heterogeneity for Life Outcomes using a Factorial Survey. SFB 882 Working Paper Series. Vol 20. Bielefeld: DFG Research Center (SFB) 882 From Heterogeneities to Inequalities; 2013.
Schunck, R., Abendroth, A., Diewald, M., Melzer, S. M., & Pausch, S. (2013). What do Women and Men Want? Investigating and Measuring Preference Heterogeneity for Life Outcomes using a Factorial Survey (SFB 882 Working Paper Series, 20). Bielefeld: DFG Research Center (SFB) 882 From Heterogeneities to Inequalities.
Schunck, R., Abendroth, A., Diewald, M., Melzer, S. M., and Pausch, S. (2013). What do Women and Men Want? Investigating and Measuring Preference Heterogeneity for Life Outcomes using a Factorial Survey. SFB 882 Working Paper Series, 20, Bielefeld: DFG Research Center (SFB) 882 From Heterogeneities to Inequalities.
Schunck, R., et al., 2013. What do Women and Men Want? Investigating and Measuring Preference Heterogeneity for Life Outcomes using a Factorial Survey, SFB 882 Working Paper Series, no.20, Bielefeld: DFG Research Center (SFB) 882 From Heterogeneities to Inequalities.
R. Schunck, et al., What do Women and Men Want? Investigating and Measuring Preference Heterogeneity for Life Outcomes using a Factorial Survey, SFB 882 Working Paper Series, vol. 20, Bielefeld: DFG Research Center (SFB) 882 From Heterogeneities to Inequalities, 2013.
Schunck, R., Abendroth, A., Diewald, M., Melzer, S.M., Pausch, S.: What do Women and Men Want? Investigating and Measuring Preference Heterogeneity for Life Outcomes using a Factorial Survey. SFB 882 Working Paper Series, 20. DFG Research Center (SFB) 882 From Heterogeneities to Inequalities, Bielefeld (2013).
Schunck, Reinhard, Abendroth, Anja, Diewald, Martin, Melzer, Silvia Maja, and Pausch, Stephanie. What do Women and Men Want? Investigating and Measuring Preference Heterogeneity for Life Outcomes using a Factorial Survey. Bielefeld: DFG Research Center (SFB) 882 From Heterogeneities to Inequalities, 2013. SFB 882 Working Paper Series. 20.
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