Gender, Economic Development and Islam: A Perspective from France

52 Pages Posted: 31 Mar 2012

See all articles by Claire L. Adida

Claire L. Adida

University of California, San Diego (UCSD)

David Laitin

Stanford University - Department of Political Science; Stanford Immigration Policy Lab

Marie‐Anne Valfort

Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne

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Abstract

Muslims do less well on the French labor market than their non Muslim counterparts. One explanation for this relative failure can be characterized by the following syllogism: (1) the empowerment of women is a sine qua non for economic progress; (2) in-group norms among Muslims do not empower women; and hence (3) Muslim communities will underperform economically relative to non-Muslim communities. This paper, relying on a unique identification strategy that isolates religion from national origin and ethnicity, and on experimental as well as survey evidence collected in France, puts this syllogism to a test. Our data show that Muslim and Christian gender norms are as postulated. However, the correlations between Muslim vs. Christian immigrants and the channels purported to link in-group gender norms to economic progress are weak and inconsistent. Speculations are offered on the intervening variables that mitigate the effect of Muslim gender norms on economic performance.

Keywords: development, Islam, gender, discrimination, France, experimental economics

JEL Classification: C90, D03, J15, J16, J71, Z12

Suggested Citation

Adida, Claire L. and Laitin, David and Valfort, Marie-Anne, Gender, Economic Development and Islam: A Perspective from France. IZA Discussion Paper No. 6421, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2031949

Claire L. Adida (Contact Author)

University of California, San Diego (UCSD) ( email )

9500 Gilman Drive
Mail Code 0521
La Jolla, CA 92093-0521
United States

HOME PAGE: http://claire.adida.net

David Laitin

Stanford University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Stanford Immigration Policy Lab

30 Alta Road
Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Marie-Anne Valfort

Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne ( email )

17, rue de la Sorbonne
Paris, IL 75005
France

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