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Political Inclusion and Educational Investment

Author

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  • Stephen D. O'Connell

    () (CUNY Graduate School and University Center)

Abstract

Using exogenous geographic variation in exposure to 1993 reforms that introduced seat quotas for women in local government in India, I find a sizable increase in the enrollment rate of male and female school-age children resulting from additional exposure to women leaders. Effects are particularly concentrated among poorer households and those with less- educated proximate role models, and were commensurate with reductions in idle time and household-enterprise employment. There is no evidence for the effects being facilitated by changes in school infrastructure, the labor market, or among broader social factors related to intrahousehold bargaining. Using textual data from the news media and information on women’s candidacy in parliamentary elections, I argue that evidence points to the primacy of the effect of women leaders on young women, and that effects among men are in response to changes in young women’s enrollment. These dynamic effects on men could potentially be explained either through a signaling model of human capital investment, or by demand for an eventual education differential among married couples.

Suggested Citation

  • Stephen D. O'Connell, 2014. "Political Inclusion and Educational Investment," Working Papers 4, City University of New York Graduate Center, Ph.D. Program in Economics, revised 15 Jul 2015.
  • Handle: RePEc:cgc:wpaper:004
    as

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    File URL: http://wfs.gc.cuny.edu/Economics/RePEc/cgc/wpaper/CUNYGC-WP004R.pdf
    File Function: Revised version, July 2015
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    women; gender gap; education; human capital; political reservations; empowerment; development;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid
    • I24 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Inequality
    • I25 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Economic Development
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development

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