Women's value of decision-making: Experimental evidence from Colombia.

Last registered on October 23, 2023


Trial Information

General Information

Women's value of decision-making: Experimental evidence from Colombia.
Initial registration date
November 30, 2021

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
December 03, 2021, 6:36 PM EST

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.

Last updated
October 23, 2023, 5:18 AM EDT

Last updated is the most recent time when changes to the trial's registration were published.



Primary Investigator

University of Goettingen

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
University of Goettingen
PI Affiliation
University of Düsseldorf
PI Affiliation
Universidad Eafit

Additional Trial Information

Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
We use a field experiment to investigate the demand for agency within and outside the household. We pair individuals either with their spouses or a stranger and ask them to make donation decisions from an individual and a joint budget. Then they ask them whether they accept that to delegate the decision to the partner or would prefer to pay to regain the decision rights and implement their preferred donation. The experimental conditions allow disentangling whether the demand for the agency is related to a preference for non-interference, preference for freedom, or demand for power. The experiment takes place in rural areas of Antioquia, Colombia. To understand the role of female (dis)empowerment on the values of decision rights we use exogenous variation in mining activities as predicted by metal deposits.
This experiment contributes to understanding the drivers of gender differences in the intrinsic value of the demand for agency.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Cantet, Maria Natalia et al. 2023. "Women's value of decision-making: Experimental evidence from Colombia.." AEA RCT Registry. October 23. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.7964-1.1
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details


It is a three-stage within-subject experiment where we elicit subjects preferences to keep decision rights and then subjects willingness to follow up on them. Our between variation is the partner against whom to contest (spouse vs. stranger). Each participant decides under three conditions that vary the power and freedom over the partner.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
We compare three main outcomes by pair (spouse, stranger) and gender.

1. Willingness to buy the decision right.
2. Intrinsic value of decision right
2. Value of power, self-determination, and freedom when keeping decisions right.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
1. Willingness to buy the decision right is an indicator variable on whether the participant states to be willing to pay to avoid having the partner as a delegate.
2. Intrinsic value of decision right: Willingness to pay to keep the decision right (when the donation of the partner is different and the same as own donation)
3. Value of power, self-determination, and autonomy when keeping decisions right: Each of the motivations for keeping the decision right is measured as the difference between the WTP for keeping the decision in the three treatments. Power = T1 - T2. Freedom = T2 - T3. Self-determination = T3

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
1. First and second-order expectations on the decision to donate.
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
1. First and second-order expectations. It measures altruism and preferences towards the partner. It corresponds to how much participants believe their partners will donate to the Red Cross.

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We use a between within experimental design.

First, Individuals are randomized to face one of two possible partners: either their spouses or another community member.
Then each participant report the Willingness to buy the decision right and the maximum value that they would be willing to pay under three procedures to determine donations of the partners that imply

T1. Power, Freedom and Self-Determination
T2. Freedom and Self-Determination
T3. Self-Determination

Experimental Design Details
The within-subject conditions vary the procedures to determine the value of the donation:

T1. Power, Freedom and Self-Determination: Own Donation + Partner's donation
T2. Freedom and Self-Determination: Own Donation + Fixed Donation of the partner
T3. Self-Determination: Fixed Donation of both partners.

In the first treatment, one person from the couple takes the donation decision as a decision-maker. Under these procedures, keeping the decision rights imply that the participant exerts power (affects the payment of the other), autonomy (determines own payment), and self-determination (is free to decide on his own). In treatment two, the decision-maker decides the donation value on his/her own, and the other person donates a fixed amount. As the participant who keeps the decision does not influence the payment of the other, this treatment implies autonomy and self-determination but no power. Finally, in treatment three, the value to be donated is exogenously determined for both individuals in the couple, and it is a fixed amount. Therefore, keeping the decision rights implies self-determination, but neither autonomy nor power.
Randomization Method
Stratified randomization by municipality followed by simple randomization into one of three possible partners
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
900 couples in total 1800 individuals
Sample size: planned number of observations
1800 individuals
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
The number of observations by the partner in parenthesis:
Spouse (900)
another member of the community (900)
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Universidad de EAFIT Colombia
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number


Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Is the intervention completed?
Intervention Completion Date
February 28, 2022, 12:00 +00:00
Data Collection Complete
Data Collection Completion Date
February 28, 2022, 12:00 +00:00
Final Sample Size: Number of Clusters (Unit of Randomization)
22 municipalities
Was attrition correlated with treatment status?
Final Sample Size: Total Number of Observations
1332 individuals
Final Sample Size (or Number of Clusters) by Treatment Arms
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials