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Female Labor, Western Culture and Growth in the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries

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  • Witte Mark David

    (College of Charleston)

Abstract

This paper examines the determinants of the female labor force and the impact of female labor on the growth rates of six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Using per capita spending on imported US books to approximate for western cultural sentiment, the paper finds a positive relationship between the female percentage of total labor and per capita U.S. book expenditures. The estimates suggest that an increase in western cultural sentiment equivalent to an additional $1 per person spent on U.S. books would raise the female percentage of total labor by 1.5 percent in a given GCC country. In fact, the female percentage of total labor can account for approximately 1.6 percent of the variation in growth rates between the GCC countries over time. Moreover, a 1 percent increase in the female percentage of total labor creates GDP growth equivalent to a 2 percent increase in the international price of oil.

Suggested Citation

  • Witte Mark David, 2011. "Female Labor, Western Culture and Growth in the Gulf Cooperation Council Countries," Review of Middle East Economics and Finance, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 20-31, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:rmeecf:v:7:y:2011:i:1:n:2
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Alberto F. Alesina & Edward L. Glaeser & Bruce Sacerdote, 2006. "Work and Leisure in the U.S. and Europe: Why So Different?," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2005, Volume 20, pages 1-100 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Majbouri Mahdi, 2015. "Female Labor Force Participation in Iran: A Structural Analysis," Review of Middle East Economics and Finance, De Gruyter, vol. 11(1), pages 1-23, April.
    2. Hayo Bernd & Caris Tobias, 2013. "Female Labour Force Participation in the MENA Region: The Role of Identity," Review of Middle East Economics and Finance, De Gruyter, vol. 9(3), pages 271-292, December.
    3. Hanan Nazier & Racha Ramadan, 2016. "Women's Participation in Labor Market in Egypt: Constraints and Opportunities," Working Papers 999, Economic Research Forum, revised May 2016.

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