Drivers of female labour force participation in urban India during India's Economic Boom
In the past twenty years, India's economy has grown at increasingly faster rates and now belongs to the fastest-growing economies in the world. One would think that in such economic conditions, women are increasingly being pulled into the labour force by attractive pay and employment conditions. This paper examines trends and drivers of female labour force participation in urban India between 1987 and 2004; we do this using aggregate and unit level data and estimate econometric participation models. Our paper shows a much more nuanced picture than one might expect. While we find, as expected, that cultural and social factors strongly influence female labour force participation rates, among the somewhat unexpected findings are:- Only in the period between 1999 and 2004 did female labour force participation rates increase in urban areas; before, rates remained flat due to offsetting effects of increases among some groups and decreases among others;- At lower levels of education, increases in female labour force participation are driven more by distress than by increasing economic opportunities; this is linked to stagnant real wages at this level;- At mid-levels of education, the income effect of rising male incomes served to reduce female labour force participation rates considerably; while we find some evidence of a positive own wage effect, the income effect of husband's earning remains a very strong driver of female labour force participation;- Only at the highest education levels do we see some evidence from pull factors drawing women into the labour force at attractive employment and pay conditions; this affects, by 2004, only a tiny minority of India's women.As a result, the economic boom has offered remarkably few opportunities to women in India. In fact, for all but the very well-educated, it appears that the labour market conditions have not improved at all, or even deteriorated.
|Date of creation:||2011|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.ael.ethz.ch/|
More information through EDIRC
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.:
- Orazio Attanasio & Hamish Low & Virginia Sánchez-Marcos, 2005. "Female Labor Supply As Insurance Against Idiosyncratic Risk," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 755-764, 04/05.
- Berta Esteve-Volart, 2004.
"Gender Discrimination and Growth: Theory and Evidence from India,"
STICERD - Development Economics Papers - From 2008 this series has been superseded by Economic Organisation and Public Policy Discussion Papers
42, Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE.
- Berta Esteve-Volart, 2004. "Gender discrimination and growth: theory and evidence from India," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 6641, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
- Maitreyi Bordia Das, and Sonalde Desai, 2003. "Why are educated women less likely to be employed in India? Testing competing hypotheses," Social Protection and Labor Policy and Technical Notes 27868, The World Bank.
- Chamarbagwala, Rubiana, 2006. "Economic Liberalization and Wage Inequality in India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(12), pages 1997-2015, December.
- Seguino, Stephanie, 2011. "Help or Hindrance? Religion's Impact on Gender Inequality in Attitudes and Outcomes," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 39(8), pages 1308-1321, August.
- Heckman, James, 2013.
"Sample selection bias as a specification error,"
Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
- Claudia Goldin, 1994. "The U-Shaped Female Labor Force Function in Economic Development and Economic History," NBER Working Papers 4707, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Sonia Bhalotra & Marcela Umaña-Aponte, 2010.
"The Dynamics of Women’s Labour Supply in Developing Countries,"
The Centre for Market and Public Organisation
10/235, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
- Bhalotra, Sonia R. & Umana-Aponte, Marcela, 2010. "The Dynamics of Women's Labour Supply in Developing Countries," IZA Discussion Papers 4879, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Gong, X. & van Soest, A.H.O., 1997.
"Family Structure and Female Labour Supply in Mexico City,"
1997-114, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
- Xiaodong Gong & Arthur van Soest, 2002. "Family Structure and Female Labor Supply in Mexico City," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 37(1), pages 163-191.
- Gong, Xiaodong & van Soest, Arthur, 2000. "Family Structure and Female Labour Supply in Mexico City," IZA Discussion Papers 214, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Ulrike Jäger, 2010. "Working or stay-at-home mum? The influence of family benefits and religiosity," Ifo Working Paper Series Ifo Working Paper Nr. 84, Ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
- K. Sundaram, 2007.
"Employment and Poverty in India: 2000-2005,"
- Pieters, Janneke, 2010. "Growth and Inequality in India: Analysis of an Extended Social Accounting Matrix," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 270-281, March.
- Blundell, Richard & Macurdy, Thomas, 1999.
"Labor supply: A review of alternative approaches,"
Handbook of Labor Economics,
in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 27, pages 1559-1695
- Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2007. "Changes in the Labor Supply Behavior of Married Women: 1980â€“2000," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25, pages 393-438.
- Priebe, Jan, 2011. "Child Costs and the Causal Effect of Fertility on Female Labor Supply: An investigation for Indonesia 1993-2008," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Berlin 2011 67, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
- Vinoj Abraham, 2008.
"Employment growth in rural India: Distress driven?,"
Centre for Development Studies, Trivendrum Working Papers
404, Centre for Development Studies, Trivendrum, India.
- Vinoj Abraham, 2009. "Employment Growth in Rural India: Distress Driven?," Working Papers id:1824, eSocialSciences.
- Kijima, Yoko, 2006. "Why did wage inequality increase? Evidence from urban India 1983-99," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 97-117, October.
- Barry Bosworth & Susan M. Collins & Arvind Virmani, 2007.
"Sources of Growth in the Indian Economy,"
NBER Working Papers
12901, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Stephan Klasen & Claudia Wink, 2003. ""Missing Women": Revisiting The Debate," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(2-3), pages 263-299.
- Geeta Gandhi Kingdon & Jeemol Unni, 2001. "Education and Women's Labour Market Outcomes in India," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(2), pages 173-195.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:zbw:gdec11:65. 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: (ZBW - German National Library of Economics)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.