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Soil endowments, female labor force participation and the demographic deficit of women in India

  • Carranza, Eliana

Differences in relative female employment by soil texture are used to explain the heterogeneous deficit of female children across districts within India. Soil texture varies exogenously and determines the depth of land tillage. Deep tillage, possible in loamy but not in clayey soil textures, reduces the demand for labor in agricultural tasks traditionally performed by women. Girls have a lower economic value where female labor opportunities are fewer. Consistently, higher relative female employment in agriculture improves the ratio of female to male children in districts that have a smaller fraction of loamy relative to clayey soils.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5974.

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Date of creation: 01 Feb 2012
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5974
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  1. Qian, Nancy, 2006. "Missing Women and the Price of Tea in China: The Effect of Sex-Specific Earnings on Sex Imbalance," CEPR Discussion Papers 5986, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  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. Monica Das Gupta & Jiang Zhenghua & Li Bohua & Xie Zhenming & Woojin Chung & Bae Hwa-Ok, 2003. "Why is Son preference so persistent in East and South Asia? a cross-country study of China, India and the Republic of Korea," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(2), pages 153-187.
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