Gender Inequality and Economic Growth: Evidence from Industry-Level Data
43 Pages Posted: 23 Jul 2020
Date Written: July 1, 2020
We study whether higher gender equality facilitates economic growth by enabling better allocation of a valuable resource: female labor. By allocating female labor to its more productive use, we hypothesize that reducing gender inequality should disproportionately benefit industries with typically higher female share in their employment relative to other industries. Specifically, we exploit within-country variation across industries to test whether those that typically employ more women grow relatively faster in countries with ex-ante lower gender inequality. The test allows us to identify the causal effect of gender inequality on industry growth in value-added and labor productivity. Our findings show that gender inequality affects real economic outcomes.
Keywords: Economic growth, Population growth, Labor force participation, Infant mortality rates, Manufacturing sector, economic development, gender inequality, WP, female share, GII, value-added, percentile
JEL Classification: O40, J16, O1, O47, E01, E2, F16, O4, L31
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