nep-gen New Economics Papers
on Gender
Issue of 2021‒05‒17
six papers chosen by
Jan Sauermann
Stockholms universitet

  1. Can Legal Bans on Sex Detection Technology Reduce Gender Discrimination? By Aparajita Dasgupta; Anisha Sharma
  2. Diffusion of Gender Norms: Evidence from Stalin's Ethnic Deportations By Miho, Antonela; Jarotschkin, Alexandra; Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina
  3. The economic gains of closing the employment gender gap: Evidence from Morocco By Olivier Bargain; Maria C. Lo Bue
  4. Women Legislators and Economic Performance By Baskaran, Thushyanthan; Bhalotra, Sonia; Min, Brian; Uppal, Yogesh
  5. Female Genital Cutting and the Slave Trade By Corno, Lucia; La Ferrara, Eliana; Voena, Alessandra
  6. Board Structure and Exchange Rate Risk in Emerging Market Firms By Ekta Sikarwar

  1. By: Aparajita Dasgupta (Ashoka University); Anisha Sharma (Ashoka University)
    Abstract: Bans on sex-selective abortions, typically implemented to make sex ratios more equitable, may have adverse welfare consequences in terms of increased gender discrimination against surviving ‘unwanted’ girls. Exploiting geographic and intertemporal variation in the implementation of a ban on sex-screening and sex-selection across different states in India, we examine the extent to which prenatal gender discrimination is substituted by postnatal discrimination after the enforcement of the ban. In particular, we study whether the ban on sex-selective abortions worsens relative health and mortality outcomes for girls as compared to boys. Using the observation that sex-selective abortions are more likely to occur among families with firstborn girls, we compare our treatment effects across families with firstborn girls and firstborn boys. Our findings indicate that the ban increased the gender gap in mortality, health outcomes and health investments through two main channels: an increase in the proportion of unwanted girls who face increased discrimination and an increase in fertility in intensively treated families with firstborn girls, leading to greater competition among siblings for resources. We contrast our results with the impact of a policy that, in addition to strengthening supply-side measures, also contains demand-side elements aimed at shifting social norms through a mass media gender sensitisation intervention. Our results suggest that demand-side interventions that directly target social norms reduce the adverse welfare consequences of pure supply-side restrictions.
    Keywords: sex selective abortion; missing women, PNDT, ultrasound, legal ban, son preference, gender discrimination, skewed sex ratio
    Date: 2021–05
  2. By: Miho, Antonela; Jarotschkin, Alexandra; Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina
    Abstract: We study horizontal between-group cultural transmission using a unique historical setting, which combines exogenous group exposure with no control over whether and how the representativesof different groups interact. Stalin's ethnic deportations during WWII moved over 2 million people — the majority of whom were ethnic Germans and Chechens — from the Western parts of the USSR to Central Asia and Siberia. As a result, the native population of the deportation destinations was exogenously exposed to groups with drastically different gender norms. Combining historical archival data with contemporary surveys, we document that gender norms diffused from deportees tothe local population, resulting in changes in attitudes and behavior. Norms of gender equality diffused more than norms of gender discrimination.
    Keywords: Horizontal cultural transmission, Gender norms, Deportations, Stalin
    Date: 2021–04
  3. By: Olivier Bargain; Maria C. Lo Bue
    Abstract: The present paper sheds new light on the growth implications of gender inequalities in the Moroccan labour market. We confront two different approaches. The first one is based on firm data to estimate gender complementarity in production and uses this information for simulations based on a simple macroeconomic model. The second relies on country panel variation to relate growth to the relative employment of women and, also, suggest simulations for Morocco. Both approaches lead to similar conclusions regarding the potential economic gains from increased female participation in this country.
    Keywords: Morocco, Female labour force participation, Gender gap, Employment, Growth, Production functions (Economic theory)
    Date: 2021
  4. By: Baskaran, Thushyanthan (University of Siegen); Bhalotra, Sonia (University of Essex & University of Warwick); Min, Brian (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor); Uppal, Yogesh
    Abstract: There has been a phenomenal global increase in the proportion of women in politics in the last two decades, but there is no evidence of how this influences economic performance. We investigate this using data on competitive elections to India’s state assemblies, leveraging close elections to isolate causal effects. We find significantly higher growth in economic activity in constituencies that elect women and no evidence of negative spillovers to neighbouring male-led constituencies, consistent with net growth. Probing mechanisms, we find evidence consistent with women legislators being more efficacious, less corrupt and less vulnerable to political opportunism.
    Keywords: Political representation ; identity ; India ; gender ; women legislators ; economic growth ; luminosity ; corruption ; roads ; close elections ; electoral incentives JEL Classification: D72 ; D78 ; H44 ; H73
    Date: 2021
  5. By: Corno, Lucia; La Ferrara, Eliana; Voena, Alessandra
    Abstract: We investigate the historical origins of female genital cutting (FGC), a harmful practice widespread across Africa. We test the hypothesis --substantiated by historical sources-- that FGC was connected to the Red Sea slave trade route, where women were sold as concubines in the Middle East and infibulation was used to ensure chastity. We hypothesize that differential exposure of ethnic groups to the Red Sea route determined differential adoption of the practice. Combining individual level data from 28 African countries with novel historical data on slaves' shipments by country, ethnic group and trade routes from 1400 to 1900. We find that women belonging to ethnic groups whose ancestors were exposed to the Red Sea route are more likely to be infibulated or circumcised today and are more in favor of continuing the practice. The estimated effects are very similar when slave exports are instrumented by distance to the North-Eastern African coast. Finally, the effect is smaller for ethnic groups that historically freely permitted premarital sex -- a proxy for low demand for chastity.
    Keywords: female genital cutting; FGC; FGM; Gender norms; Slave trade
    JEL: N37 O15
    Date: 2020–12
  6. By: Ekta Sikarwar (Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode)
    Abstract: The role of strong corporate governance mechanisms in encouraging value-enhancing risk management activities is well documented by literature. However, the research is scant on investigating the effects of corporate governance on firms’ exchange rate risk. Drawing on the agency theory, this study argues that a firm’s board structure as a firm-level governance mechanism should significantly affect the level of exchange rate risk. Using a sample of 373 firms from 10 emerging markets from Jan 2011-March 2018, this study examines the effects of board attributes such as board size, board composition, board leadership, and board gender diversity on firms’ exposure. The findings reveal that the board size, the proportion of independent directors on board, and the presence of women on board are associated with lower exchange rate risk. Additionally, the effect of the presence of women directors on firms’ exposure becomes stronger when there’s higher board independence.
    Keywords: Exchange rate risk, Board of directors, emerging market, Women on board, Firmlevel internal corporate governance
    Date: 2021–02

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