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Why Do So Many Women End Up in ‘Bad Jobs’? A Cross-country Assessment for Developing Countries


  • Angela Luci

    (Universite Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne, Paris.)

  • Johannes Jütting

    (OECD Development Centre, Paris.)

  • Christian Morrisson

    (OECD Development Centre, Paris.)


This study addresses gender differentials in labour market outcomes in developing countries. There is emerging evidence that even though women in developing countries increasingly enter the labour force, they often end up in jobs with low pay, low security and limited social mobility. We find that in addition to well-established factors determining labour market outcomes (such as education and training, care obligations and barriers to asset accumulation), social institutions are statistically associated with a gender bias in activity patterns and in occupations by sector and status. Our findings suggest that addressing discriminatory social norms, traditions and laws against women is crucial in allowing women to take up more and better jobs.Cette étude concerne les résultats différents obtenus sur le marché du travail en fonction du sexe. Il devient de plus en plus évident que, même si les femmes participent de plus en plus au marché du travail dans les pays en développement, il est fréquent qu’elles n’obtiennent finalement que des emplois à faible salaire, précaires et à mobilité sociale réduite. Nous avons trouvé qu’en plus des facteurs bien connus qui déterminent les résultats sur le marché du travail (tels que l’éducation et la formation, les charges familiales et les obstacles à l’accumulation d’un capital), les institutions sociales sont associées statistiquement à un biais défavorable aux femmes en ce qui concerne la structure des activités et les occupations selon le secteur et selon le statut. Nos résultats suggèrent qu’il est crucial de se préoccuper des normes sociales , des traditions et des lois discriminatoires à l’égard des femmes, pour leur permettre d’accéder à plus d’emplois et à de meilleurs emplois.

Suggested Citation

  • Angela Luci & Johannes Jütting & Christian Morrisson, 2012. "Why Do So Many Women End Up in ‘Bad Jobs’? A Cross-country Assessment for Developing Countries," The European Journal of Development Research, Palgrave Macmillan;European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI), vol. 24(4), pages 530-549, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:pal:eurjdr:v:24:y:2012:i:4:p:530-549

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    1. Christine Dieterich & Anni Huang & Alun H. Thomas, 2016. "Women’s Opportunities and Challenges in Sub-Saharan African Job Markets," IMF Working Papers 16/118, International Monetary Fund.

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