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Integrating Time in Public Policy: Empirical Description of Gender-specific Outcomes and Budgeting


  • Lekha Chakraborty


Incorporating time in public policymaking is an elusive area of research. Despite the fact that gender budgeting is emerging as a significant tool to analyze the socioeconomic impacts of fiscal policies and thus identify their impacts on gender equity, the integration of time-use statistics in this process remains incomplete, or is even entirely absent, in most countries. If gender budgeting is predominantly based on the index-based empirical description of gender-specific outcomes, a reexamination of the construction of the gender (inequality) index is needed. This is necessary if we are to avoid an incomplete description of the gender-specific outcomes in budget policymaking. Further, "hard-to-price" services are hardly analyzed in public policymaking. This issue is all the more revealing, as the available gender-inequality index—based on health, empowerment, and labor market participation--so far has not integrated time-use statistics in its calculations. From a public finance perspective, the gender budgeting process often rests on the assumption that mainstream expenditures, such as public infrastructure, are nonrival in nature, and that applying a gender lens to these expenditures is not feasible. This argument is refuted by time budget statistics. The time budget data reveal that this argument is often flawed, as there is an intrinsic gender dimension to nonrival expenditures.

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  • Lekha Chakraborty, 2014. "Integrating Time in Public Policy: Empirical Description of Gender-specific Outcomes and Budgeting," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_785, Levy Economics Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:lev:wrkpap:wp_785

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Engel, Eduardo M. R. A. & Galetovic, Alexander & Raddatz, Claudio E., 1999. "Taxes and income distribution in Chile: some unpleasant redistributive arithmetic," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 155-192, June.
    2. Juster, F Thomas & Stafford, Frank P, 1991. "The Allocation of Time: Empirical Findings, Behavioral Models, and Problems of Measurement," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 29(2), pages 471-522, June.
    3. Barro, Robert J. & Lee, Jong Wha, 2013. "A new data set of educational attainment in the world, 1950–2010," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 104(C), pages 184-198.
    4. Chakraborty, Lekha S. & Bagchi, Amaresh, 2007. "Fiscal decentralisation and gender responsive budgeting in South Africa: An appraisal," Working Papers 07/45, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy.
    5. M. Govinda Rao & Chakraborty, Lekha S., 2006. "Fiscal decentralisation and local level gender responsive budgeting in Morocco: Some observations," Working Papers 06/42, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy.
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    Cited by:

    1. Aggarwal, Bhavya & Chakraborty, Lekha S, 2015. "Towards 2030 UN Agenda on Sustainable Development Goals: Technical Challenges in Measuring the Gender Inequality for Asia Pacific," MPRA Paper 67049, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Lekha Chakraborty, 2016. "Asia; A Survey of Gender Budgeting Efforts," IMF Working Papers 16/150, International Monetary Fund.
    3. Bhavya Aggarwal & Lekha S. Chakraborty, 2016. "The 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and Measuring Gender Inequality: A Technical Articulation for Asia-Pacific," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_859, Levy Economics Institute.
    4. Aggarwal, Bhavya & Chakraborty, Lekha, 2015. "Towards 2030 UN Agenda on Sustainable Development Goals: Technical Challenges in Measuring Gender Inequality in Asia Pacific," Working Papers 15/157, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy.

    More about this item


    Unpaid Care Work; Fiscal Policy; Gender Budgeting; Time Use; Macro Policy;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household

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