Working Paper No. 1200

Avoiding the Housewife Stigma: Self-Employment as a Female Career Choice

Published: February 12, 2018Pages: 42Keywords: Career choice; Entrepreneurship; Marriage; Self-employment; WomenJEL-codes: J16; J12; J13; J22; L26

Avoiding the Housewife Stigma: Self-Employment as a Female Career Choice Carl Magnus Bjuggren and Magnus Henrekson


This paper investigates career choices of women who marry high-income men. We find that women married to men in the top of the income distribution are more likely to enter self-employment, which is also associated with a lower income. This can be interpreted as a career choice that produces a more flexible work schedule in return for lower income. In a Nordic welfare state where work is the norm for women, self-employment offers a way to avoid the stay-at-home stigma. It allows one to stay in the workforce while enjoying approval from society and being in control of one’s work schedule and personal demands.

An Agenda for Europe

Institutional Reform for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Omslag 2017 Institutional Reform for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.jpg

The authors of this book, Niklas Elert, Magnus Henrekson and Mikael Stenkula, advise the economies of the European Union to become more entrepreneurial in promoting innovation and economic growth. The authors propose a reform strategy with respect to several aspects to achieve this goal.

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