Changing Norms About Gender Inequality in Education: Evidence from Bangladesh

39 Pages Posted: 16 Aug 2014

See all articles by Niels-Hugo Blunch

Niels-Hugo Blunch

Washington and Lee University; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Maitreyi Bordia Das

World Bank

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This paper examines norms about gender equality of the education of children and adults in Bangladesh using a recent household survey for two cohorts of married women. Education norms are found to differ substantially across cohorts, with women from the younger cohort being far more positive about female vs. male education of both children and adults. The effect of education in determining norms spans own and spousal education, as well as that of older educated females in the household, thus indicating sharing of education norms both within marriage and across generations. Detailed decompositions reveal that more than anything else it is the improvement in education across cohorts that has been driving the narrowing of the generational education norms gap in Bangladesh in recent years.

Keywords: gender education inequality norms, human capital, decomposition analysis, Bangladesh

JEL Classification: D190, I290, J120, J160, J240

Suggested Citation

Blunch, Niels-Hugo and Das, Maitreyi Bordia, Changing Norms About Gender Inequality in Education: Evidence from Bangladesh. IZA Discussion Paper No. 8365, Available at SSRN:

Niels-Hugo Blunch (Contact Author)

Washington and Lee University ( email )

Department of Economics
Lexington, VA 24450
United States


IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072

Maitreyi Bordia Das

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

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