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Does Female Empowerment Promote Economic Development?

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  • Doepke, Matthias

    ()
    (Northwestern University)

  • Tertilt, Michèle

    ()
    (University of Mannheim)

Abstract

Empirical evidence suggests that money in the hands of mothers (as opposed to their husbands) benefits children. Does this observation imply that targeting transfers to women is good economic policy? We develop a series of noncooperative family bargaining models to understand what kind of frictions can give rise to the observed empirical relationships. We then assess the policy implications of these models. We find that targeting transfers to women can have unintended consequences and may fail to make children better off. Moreover, different forms of empowering women may lead to opposite results. More research is needed to distinguish between alternative theoretical models.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 5637.

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Length: 70 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5637

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Keywords: female empowerment; gender equality; development; theory of the household; marital bargaining;

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Citations

Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Transfers to mothers may hurt children
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2011-05-19 14:39:00
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Cited by:
  1. Alger, Ingela & Cox, Donald, 2012. "The Evolution of Altruistic Preferences: Mothers versus Fathers," LERNA Working Papers, LERNA, University of Toulouse 12.30.387, LERNA, University of Toulouse, revised May 2013.
  2. Anderson, C. Leigh & Reynolds, Travis William & Gugerty, Mary Kay, 2012. "Spousal Accord and the Costs of Household Decision-making in Tanzania and Mali," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association 125018, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  3. Adida, Claire L. & Laitin, David D. & Valfort, Marie-Anne, 2012. "Gender, Economic Development and Islam: A Perspective from France," IZA Discussion Papers, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) 6421, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Elisabetta LODIGIANI & Sara SALOMONE, 2012. "Migration-induced Transfers of Norms. The case of Female Political Empowerment," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales), Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) 2012001, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  5. Michèle Tertilt, 2012. "The Research Agenda: Michèle Tertilt on Gender in Macroeconomics," EconomicDynamics Newsletter, Review of Economic Dynamics, Review of Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(1), November.
  6. van de Walle, Dominique, 2013. "Lasting Welfare Effects of Widowhood in Mali," World Development, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 1-19.
  7. Gerritzen, Berit C., 2014. "Intra-Household Bargaining Power and HIV Prevention: Empirical Evidence from Married Couples in Rural Malawi," Economics Working Paper Series, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science 1408, University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science.
  8. Christopher Ksoll, Janny Aker, Danielle Miller, Karla C. Perez-Mendoza, and Susan L. Smalley, 2014. "Learning without Teachers? A Randomized Experiment of a Mobile Phone-Based Adult Education Program in Los Angeles - Working Paper 368," Working Papers, Center for Global Development 368, Center for Global Development.
  9. Ogilvie, Sheilagh & Carus, A.W., 2014. "Institutions and Economic Growth in Historical Perspective," Handbook of Economic Growth, Elsevier, in: Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 8, pages 403-513 Elsevier.
  10. van de Walle, Dominique, 2011. "Lasting welfare effects of widowhood in a poor country," Policy Research Working Paper Series, The World Bank 5734, The World Bank.
  11. World Bank, 2011. "Work and Family : Latin American and Caribbean Women in Search of a New Balance," World Bank Other Operational Studies, The World Bank 12489, The World Bank.

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