Gender Discrimination and the International Division of Labour

38 Pages Posted: 9 Oct 2003

Date Written: 2003


The paper empirically explores the international economic effects of gender discrimination, namely the linkages of gender inequality with comparative advantage (trade) and foreign direct investment flows. It discusses different forms and the extent of gender discrimination across countries and presents the results of empirical tests of those linkages. The results indicate that gender inequality is positively associated with comparative advantage in unskilled-labour-intensive goods, that is, commodities where the impact of gender bias is likely to be felt most strongly. In contrast, foreign direct investment is negatively linked with gender inequality. These results even hold for relatively poor developing countries.

Keywords: Gender Discrimination, Trade, Comparative Advantage, FDI

JEL Classification: F11, F23, J71, J82

Suggested Citation

Busse, Matthias and Spielmann, Christian, Gender Discrimination and the International Division of Labour (2003). Available at SSRN: or

Matthias Busse (Contact Author)

Ruhr-University Bochum ( email )

Faculty of Management and Economics, GC 3/145
D-44780 Bochum, DE 44780

Christian Spielmann


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