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Do shocks affect men's and women's assets differently?: A review of literature and new evidence from Bangladesh and Uganda

  • Quisumbing, Agnes R.
  • Kumar, Neha
  • Behrman, Julia A.

This background paper attempts to expand our understanding of the gender-differentiated impact of shocks on assets through a literature review on shocks and gendered asset dynamics and an analysis of new panel data (2007 and 2009) from Uganda and Bangladesh looking at the impact of negative shocks and positive events on men's and women's assets. We take advantage of detailed assets and shocks modules to disaggregate the type of shock between covariate and idiosyncratic shocks and types of assets according to ownership (joint, husband's, and wife's assets). We also consider the impact of life-cycle events such as dowry payments and receipts, and inheritance. Estimation of an asset accumulation regression as a function of covariate and idiosyncratic shocks, with controls for baseline characteristics and asset stocks, finds that although many shocks are similar in both countries, commonly experienced shocks do not necessarily have the same effects across countries and on men's, women's, and jointly owned assets within countries. Land and assets in general were relatively well insured against food price increases in Bangladesh, but jointly held assets and wives' assets in Uganda were negatively affected. Weather shocks negatively impact husbands' assets and wives' assets in Bangladesh and Uganda, respectively. Reflecting differences in country and context, dowry and wedding expenses took their toll on wives' land in Bangladesh, and illness shocks also had a large detrimental impact on wives' assets in Bangladesh, while death negatively affected wives' assets in Uganda. Within households, however, it appears that in Bangladesh, husbands' land and assets were more negatively affected by covariate shocks relative to wives' assets, whereas in Uganda, husbands' assets were relatively protected against covariate shocks relative to wives' assets.

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Paper provided by International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in its series IFPRI discussion papers with number 1113.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:fpr:ifprid:1113
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  1. Ahmed, Akhter U. & Hill, Ruth Vargas & Smith, Lisa C. & Wiesmann, Doris M. & Frankenberger, Tim & Gulati, Kajal & Quabili, Wahidand & Yohannes, Yisehac, 2007. "The world's most deprived: Characteristics and causes of extreme poverty and hunger," 2020 vision discussion papers 43, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  2. Md. Zahidul Hassan & Wahid Quabili & Mohammad Zobair & Bob Baulch & Agnes Quisumbing, 2011. "Sampling and survey design of the Bangladesh long-term impact study," Journal of Development Effectiveness, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 3(2), pages 281-296.
  3. Philip H. Brown, 2003. "Dowry and Intrahousehold Bargaining: Evidence from China," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 2003-608, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  4. Mather, David & Donovan, Cynthia, 2008. "The Impacts of Prime-Age Adult Mortality on Rural Household Income, Assets, and Poverty in Mozambique," Food Security Collaborative Working Papers 56071, Michigan State University, Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics.
  5. Yamano, Takashi & Jayne, T. S., 2004. "Measuring the Impacts of Working-Age Adult Mortality on Small-Scale Farm Households in Kenya," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 91-119, January.
  6. Fafchamps, Marcel & Quisumbing, Agnes R., 2001. "Control and ownership of assets within rural Ethiopian households," FCND briefs 120, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  7. Agnes R. Quisumbing & John A. Maluccio, 2003. "Resources at Marriage and Intrahousehold Allocation: Evidence from Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and South Africa," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 65(3), pages 283-327, 07.
  8. Jennifer Ward-Batts, 2001. "Health, Wealth and Gender: Do Health Shocks of Husbands and Wives Have Different Impacts on Household Wealth?," Working Papers wp016, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  9. Doss, Cheryl & McPeak, John & Barrett, Christopher B., 2008. "Interpersonal, Intertemporal and Spatial Variation in Risk Perceptions: Evidence from East Africa," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 1453-1468, August.
  10. Ahmed, Akhter U. & Quisumbing, Agnes R. & Nasreen, Mahbuba & Hoddinott, John F. & Bryan, Elizabeth, 2009. "Comparing Food and Cash Transfers to the Ultra-Poor in Bangladesh," Research reports 163, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  11. Agnes Quisumbing & Bob Baulch, 2009. "Assets and Poverty Traps in Rural Bangladesh," Working Papers id:2158, eSocialSciences.
  12. Doss, Cheryl R., 2002. "Men's Crops? Women's Crops? The Gender Patterns of Cropping in Ghana," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 30(11), pages 1987-2000, November.
  13. Lybbert, Travis J. & Barrett, Christopher B. & Desta, Solomon & Coppock, D. Layne, 2002. "Stochastic Wealth Dynamics And Risk Management Among A Poor Population," Working Papers 14736, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
  14. Dillon, Andrew & Quiñones, Esteban J., 2010. "Asset dynamics in Northern Nigeria:," IFPRI discussion papers 1049, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  15. Antony Chapoto & T. S. Jayne & Nicole M. Mason, 2011. "Widows’ Land Security in the Era of HIV/AIDS: Panel Survey Evidence from Zambia," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(3), pages 511 - 547.
  16. Quisumbing, Agnes R., 2011. "Do men and women accumulate assets in different ways?: Evidence from rural Bangladesh," IFPRI discussion papers 1096, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  17. Carter, Michael R. & Little, Peter D. & Mogues, Tewodaj & Negatu, Workneh, 2007. "Poverty Traps and Natural Disasters in Ethiopia and Honduras," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 835-856, May.
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  19. Amber Peterman, 2012. "Widowhood and Asset Inheritance in Sub-Saharan Africa: Empirical Evidence from 15 Countries," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 30(5), pages 543-571, 09.
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