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Intergenerational Effects of Improving Women's Property Rights: Evidence from India

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Listed:
  • Nayana Bose

    () (Department of Economics, Scripps College, Claremont)

  • Shreyasee Das

    () (Department of Economics, University of Wisconsin - Whitewater)

Abstract

This paper analyzes the intergenerational effects following the positive changes in women’s inheritance rights. The amendment to the Hindu Succession Act, the law governing inheritance for Hindus, empowered unmarried daughters at the time of the reform to have equal rights to inherit ancestral property as their brothers. We employ a difference-in-differences strategy and exploit the state level variation in a woman’s exposure to the reform. Using the Indian Human Development Survey data for rural India, we find that the property rights reform significantly increased women’s education. We find a significant decrease in her sons’ education, the effect is magnified in households where fathers are less educated than mothers. We further explore the role of birth order and the gender composition of children to assess the intergenerational impact of this more gender equal inheritance law. Regardless of the child’s gender, our results show a significant decrease in educational attainment for younger children.

Suggested Citation

  • Nayana Bose & Shreyasee Das, 2017. "Intergenerational Effects of Improving Women's Property Rights: Evidence from India," Working Papers 17-01, UW-Whitewater, Department of Economics, revised Nov 2017.
  • Handle: RePEc:uww:wpaper:17-01
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Property Rights; Hindu Inheritance Law; Education; Intergenerational Transfers; India;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • I25 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Education and Economic Development
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • K36 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Family and Personal Law
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development

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