Women's legal rights over 50 years : what is the impact of reform ?
This study uses a newly compiled database of women's property rights and legal capacity covering 100 countries over 50 years to test for the impact of legal reforms on employment, health, and education outcomes for women and girls. The database demonstrates gender gaps in the ability to access and own property, sign legal documents in one's own name, and have equality or non-discrimination as a guiding principle of the country's constitution. In the initial period, 75 countries had gender gaps in at least one of these areas and often multiple ones. By 2010, 57 countries had made reforms that strengthened women's economic rights, including 28 countries that had eliminated all of the constraints monitored here. In the cross-section and within countries over time, the removal of gender gaps in rights is associated with greater participation of women in the labor force, greater movement out of agricultural employment, higher rates of women in wage employment, lower adolescent fertility, lower maternal and infant mortality, and higher female educational enrollment. This paper provides evidence on how the strengthening of women's legal rights is associated with important development outcomes.
|Date of creation:||01 Sep 2013|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 1818 H Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20433|
Phone: (202) 477-1234
Web page: http://www.worldbank.org/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Ernest Aryeetey & Christopher Udry, 2010. "Creating Property Rights: Land Banks in Ghana," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(2), pages 130-134, May.
- Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2006.
"Bargaining in the Shadow of the Law: Divorce Laws and Family Distress,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 121(1), pages 267-288.
- Stevenson, Betsey & Wolfers, Justin, 2003. "Bargaining in the Shadow of the Law: Divorce Laws and Family Distress," Research Papers 1828, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
- Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2003. "Bargaining in the Shadow of the Law: Divorce Laws and Family Distress," NBER Working Papers 10175, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Marcel Fafchamps & Mans Söderbom & Najy Benhassine, 2009.
"Wage Gaps and Job Sorting in African Manufacturing,"
Journal of African Economies,
Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 18(5), pages 824-868, November.
- Benhassine, Najy & Fafchamps, Marcel & Söderbom, Måns, 2006. "Wage Gaps and Job Sorting in African Manufacturing," CEPR Discussion Papers 6003, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Simeon Djankov & Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silane & Andrei Shleifer & Juan Botero, 2003.
"The Regulation of Labor,"
NBER Working Papers
9756, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Botero, J. C. & Djankov, S. & Porta, R. L. & Lopez-de-Silanes, F. & Shleifer, Andrei, 2004. "The Regulation of Labor," Scholarly Articles 27867241, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Juan Botero & Simeon Djankov & Rafael LaPorta & Florencio López-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, "undated". "The Regulation of Labor," Working Paper 19483, Harvard University OpenScholar.
- Besley, Timothy, 1995. "Property Rights and Investment Incentives: Theory and Evidence from Ghana," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(5), pages 903-937, October.
- Aterido, Reyes & Beck, Thorsten & Iacovone, Leonardo, 2011. "Gender and finance in Sub-Saharan Africa : are women disadvantaged ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5571, The World Bank.
- de Mel, Suresh & McKenzie, David & Woodruff, Christopher, 2008.
"Are women more credit constrained ? experimental evidence on gender and microenterprise returns,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
4746, The World Bank.
- Suresh de Mel & David McKenzie & Christopher Woodruff, 2009. "Are Women More Credit Constrained? Experimental Evidence on Gender and Microenterprise Returns," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(3), pages 1-32, July.
- de Mel, Suresh & McKenzie, David & Woodruff, Christopher, 2008. "Are Women More Credit Constrained? Experimental Evidence on Gender and Microenterprise Returns," IZA Discussion Papers 3743, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Deininger, Klaus & Goyal, Aparajita & Nagarajan, Hari, 2010. "Inheritance law reform and women's access to capital : evidence from India's Hindu succession act," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5338, The World Bank.
- Sevi Simavi & Clare Manuel & Mark Blackden, 2010. "Gender Dimensions of Investment Climate Reform : A Guide for Policy Makers and Practitioners," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2408.
- Markus Goldstein & Christopher Udry, 2008.
"The Profits of Power: Land Rights and Agricultural Investment in Ghana,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(6), pages 981-1022, December.
- Markus Goldstein & Christopher Udry, 2005. "The Profits of Power: Land Rights and Agricultural Investment in Ghana," Working Papers 929, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
- Erica Field, 2007. "Entitled to Work: Urban Property Rights and Labor Supply in Peru," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(4), pages 1561-1602.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6617. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Roula I. Yazigi)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.