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Can I Have Permission to Leave the House? Return Migration and the Transfer of Gender Norms

Author

Listed:
  • Tuccio, Michele

    () (University of Southampton)

  • Wahba, Jackline

    () (University of Southampton)

Abstract

Does international return migration transfer gender norms? Focusing on Jordan, an Arab country where discrimination against women and emigration rates are high, this paper exploits unique data in which detailed information on female empowerment allows us to construct several measures of discriminatory social norms in Jordan on the role of women, female freedom of mobility, and female decision-making power. Controlling for both emigration and return migration selections, we find that women with a returnee family member are more likely to have internalized discriminatory gender norms than women in households with no migration experience. Further analysis shows that results are driven by returnees from conservative Arab countries, suggesting a transfer of negative norms from highly discriminatory destinations. We also show the implications of our results beyond perceptions for several economic and development outcomes, such as female labour force participation, education and fertility.

Suggested Citation

  • Tuccio, Michele & Wahba, Jackline, 2015. "Can I Have Permission to Leave the House? Return Migration and the Transfer of Gender Norms," IZA Discussion Papers 9216, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp9216
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Elisabetta Lodigiani & Sara Salomone, 2012. "Migration-induced Transfers of Norms. The Case of Female Political Empowerment," DEGIT Conference Papers c017_058, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
    2. Booysen, Frikkie & van der Berg, Servaas & Burger, Ronelle & Maltitz, Michael von & Rand, Gideon du, 2008. "Using an Asset Index to Assess Trends in Poverty in Seven Sub-Saharan African Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(6), pages 1113-1130, June.
    3. Ragui Assaad & Hanan Nazier & Racha Ramadan, 2014. "Individual and Households Determinants of Women Empowerment: Application to the Case of Egypt," Working Papers 867, Economic Research Forum, revised Nov 2014.
    4. Bertoli, Simone & Marchetta, Francesca, 2015. "Bringing It All Back Home – Return Migration and Fertility Choices," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 27-40.
    5. David McKenzie & Caroline Theoharides & Dean Yang, 2014. "Distortions in the International Migrant Labor Market: Evidence from Filipino Migration and Wage Responses to Destination Country Economic Shocks," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 6(2), pages 49-75, April.
    6. repec:dau:papers:123456789/12585 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Erik Meyersson, 2014. "Islamic Rule and the Empowerment of the Poor and Pious," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 82(1), pages 229-269, January.
    8. Catia Batista & Pedro C. Vicente, 2011. "Do Migrants Improve Governance at Home? Evidence from a Voting Experiment," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 25(1), pages 77-104, May.
    9. Erica Field & Seema Jayachandran & Rohini Pande, 2010. "Do Traditional Institutions Constrain Female Entrepreneurship? A Field Experiment on Business Training in India," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(2), pages 125-129, May.
    10. Chauvet, Lisa & Mercier, Marion, 2014. "Do return migrants transfer political norms to their origin country? Evidence from Mali," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 630-651.
    11. Toman Barsbai & Hillel Rapoport & Andreas Steinmayr & Christoph Trebesch, 2017. "The Effect of Labor Migration on the Diffusion of Democracy: Evidence from a Former Soviet Republic," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(3), pages 36-69, July.
    12. Ferrant, Gaëlle & Tuccio, Michele, 2015. "South–South Migration and Discrimination Against Women in Social Institutions: A Two-way Relationship," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 240-254.
    13. Anda David & Mohamed Ali Marouani, 2013. "The Labor Mobility-Employment Nexus: A General Equilibrium Analysis for Jordan," Working Papers 824, Economic Research Forum, revised Dec 2013.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jackline Wahba & Ishac Diwan & Michele Tuccio, 2017. "Diaspora Networks as a Bridge between Civilizations," Working Papers 1094, Economic Research Forum, revised 05 Nov 2017.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    international return migration; gender inequality; transfer of norms;

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East

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