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He says, she says: Exploring patterns of spousal agreement in Bangladesh

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  • Ambler, Kate
  • Doss, Cheryl
  • Kieran, Caitlin
  • Passarelli, Simone

Abstract

Participation in household decisions and control over assets are often used as indicators of bargaining power. Yet spouses do not necessarily provide the same answers to questions about these topics. We examine differences in spouses’ answers to questions regarding who participates in decisions about household activities, who owns assets, and who decides to purchase assets. Disagreement is substantial and systematic, with women more likely to report joint ownership or decision making and men more likely to report sole male ownership or decision making. Analysis of correlations between agreement and women’s well-being finds that agreement on joint decision making/ownership is generally positively associated with beneficial outcomes for women compared with agreement on sole male decision making/ownership. Cases of disagreement where women recognize their involvement but men do not are also positively associated with good outcomes for women, but often to a lesser extent than when men agree that women are involved.

Suggested Citation

  • Ambler, Kate & Doss, Cheryl & Kieran, Caitlin & Passarelli, Simone, 2017. "He says, she says: Exploring patterns of spousal agreement in Bangladesh," IFPRI discussion papers 1616, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  • Handle: RePEc:fpr:ifprid:1616
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    Cited by:

    1. Panu Poutvaara & Maximilian Schwefer, 2018. "Husbands’ and wives’ diverging perceptions on who decides," ifo Working Paper Series 279, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
    2. Hazel Jean L. Malapit & Esha Sraboni & Agnes R. Quisumbing & Akhter U. Ahmed, 2019. "Intrahousehold empowerment gaps in agriculture and children's well‐being in Bangladesh," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 37(2), pages 176-203, March.
    3. Meinzen-Dick, Ruth & Quisumbing, Agnes & Doss, Cheryl & Theis, Sophie, 2019. "Women's land rights as a pathway to poverty reduction: Framework and review of available evidence," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 172(C), pages 72-82.
    4. Meinzen-Dick, Ruth Suseela & Quisumbing, Agnes R. & Doss, Cheryl R. & Theis, Sophie, 2017. "Women’s land rights as a pathway to poverty reduction: A framework and review of available evidence," IFPRI discussion papers 1663, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    5. Ngonidzashe Chirinda & Laura Arenas & Sandra Loaiza & Catalina Trujillo & Maria Katto & Paula Chaparro & Jonathan Nuñez & Jacobo Arango & Deissy Martinez-Baron & Ana María Loboguerrero & Luis A. Becer, 2017. "Novel Technological and Management Options for Accelerating Transformational Changes in Rice and Livestock Systems," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 9(11), pages 1-16, October.
    6. Gundula Fischer & Nicolas Patt & Justus Ochieng & Henry Mvungi, 2020. "Participation in and Gains from Traditional Vegetable Value Chains: a Gendered Analysis of Perceptions of Labour, Income and Expenditure in Producers’ and Traders’ Households," The European Journal of Development Research, Palgrave Macmillan;European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI), vol. 32(4), pages 1080-1104, September.
    7. Kilic,Talip & Moylan,Heather G. & Koolwal,Gayatri B., 2020. "Getting the (Gender-Disaggregated) Lay of the Land : Impact of Survey Respondent Selection on Measuring Land Ownership and Rights," Policy Research Working Paper Series 9151, The World Bank.

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    Keywords

    BANGLADESH; SOUTH ASIA; ASIA; gender; gender relations; households; assets; ownership; decision making; families; social structure; women; communities; bargaining power; measurement; intrahousehold;
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