Empowering Women Through Education and Influence: An Evaluation of the Indian Mahila Samakhya Program

54 Pages Posted: 25 Feb 2012

See all articles by Eeshani Kandpal

Eeshani Kandpal

World Bank

Kathy Baylis

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics

Mary Arends-Kuenning

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

This paper shows that participation in a community-level female empowerment program in India significantly increases participants' physical mobility, political participation, and access to employment. The program provides support groups, literacy camps, adult education classes, and vocational training. We use truncation-corrected matching and instrumental variables on primary data to disentangle the program's mechanisms, separately considering its effect on women who work, and those who do not work but whose reservation wage is increased by participation. We also find significant spillover effects on non-participants relative to women in untreated districts.

Keywords: women's empowerment, community-level interventions, impact evaluation, India

JEL Classification: D13, I24, J16, O15, O17

Suggested Citation

Kandpal, Eeshani and Baylis, Kathy and Arends-Kuenning, Mary, Empowering Women Through Education and Influence: An Evaluation of the Indian Mahila Samakhya Program. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2010942 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2010942

Eeshani Kandpal (Contact Author)

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Kathy Baylis

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign - Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics ( email )

1301 W. Gregory Drive
Urbana, IL 61801
United States

Mary Arends-Kuenning

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign ( email )

601 E John St
1301 W Gregory Drive
Urbana, IL 61801
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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