Gender Inequality and Caste: Field Experimental Evidence from India

30 Pages Posted: 11 Sep 2021 Last revised: 19 May 2022

See all articles by Asad Islam

Asad Islam

Monash University - Department of Economics

Debayan Pakrashi

Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur

Soubhagya Sahoo

Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur

Liang C. Wang

Monash University

Yves Zenou

Stockholm University; Monash University - Department of Economics; Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IUI); IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

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Abstract

Using a field experiment in India where patients are randomly assigned to rank among a set of physicians of the same gender but with different castes and years of experience, we show that the differences in patients' physician choices are consistent with gender-based statistical discrimination. Labor market experience cannot easily overcome the discrimination that female doctors suffer. Further, we find that gender discrimination is greater for lower caste doctors, who typically suffer from caste discrimination. Given the increasing share of professionals from a lower caste background, our results suggest that the 'intersectionality' between gender and caste leads to increased gender inequality among professionals in India.

Keywords: caste discrimination, statistical discrimination, gender discrimination, intersectionality, affirmative action

JEL Classification: J16, J15, I15, O12

Suggested Citation

Islam, Asadul and Pakrashi, Debayan and Sahoo, Soubhagya and Wang, Liang C. and Zenou, Yves and Zenou, Yves, Gender Inequality and Caste: Field Experimental Evidence from India. IZA Discussion Paper No. 14713, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3921503

Asadul Islam (Contact Author)

Monash University - Department of Economics ( email )

Department of Economics
Monash University
Caulfield East, Victoria
Australia
+61399032783 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://users.monash.edu/~asaduli/

Debayan Pakrashi

Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur ( email )

Kharagpur
Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh 208016
India

Soubhagya Sahoo

Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur

IIT Kanpur
kalyanpur
Kanpur, 208016
India

Liang C. Wang

Monash University ( email )

Australia

Yves Zenou

Monash University - Department of Economics ( email )

Australia

Stockholm University ( email )

Universitetsvägen 10
Stockholm, Stockholm SE-106 91
Sweden

Research Institute of Industrial Economics (IUI) ( email )

P.O. Box 5501
S-114 85 Stockholm
Sweden

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

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