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Gender inequality, endogenous cultural norms and economic development

This research focuses on the role played by cultural norms in the long run persistence of gender inequalities. Cultural norms about gender roles are considered to be endogenous and can generate gender inequality and low development traps. Indeed, when the gender gap is internalized, it leads to inegalitarian views about gender roles. Due to these inegalitarian beliefs, boys receive more education and the initial gender gap is reinforced. The existence of gender inequality traps is pointed out by the World Bank as a major obstacle for economic development (WDR 2006). The present article allows for a better understanding of the persistence of such traps and the means to escape.

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Paper provided by Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne in its series Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne with number v08075.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mse:cesdoc:v08075
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  1. David de la Croix & Matthias Doepke, 2002. "Public versus Private Education when Differential Fertility Matters," UCLA Economics Working Papers 816, UCLA Department of Economics.
  2. Alesina, Alberto F & Giuliano, Paola & Nunn, Nathan, 2011. "On the origins of gender roles: women and the plough," CEPR Discussion Papers 8418, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. DE LA CROIX, David & DOEPKE, Matthias, . "Inequality and growth: why differential fertility matters," CORE Discussion Papers RP 1676, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  4. Arusha Cooray & Niklas Potrafke, 2010. "Gender inequality in education: Political institutions or culture and religion?," Working Paper Series of the Department of Economics, University of Konstanz 2010-01, Department of Economics, University of Konstanz.
  5. Cagatay, Nilufer & Ozler, Sule, 1995. "Feminization of the labor force: The effects of long-term development and structural adjustment," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 23(11), pages 1883-1894, November.
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