The opportunity costs of gender inequality empirical perspective
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The opportunity costs of gender inequality:empirical perspective . Poverty reduction, human development and women’s empowerment. The pervasiveness of gender inequality. Gender inequalities are pervasive across countries (rich as well as poor but not uniformly so)

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The opportunity costs of gender inequality empirical perspective l.jpg

The opportunity costs of gender inequality:empirical perspective

Poverty reduction, human development and women’s empowerment


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The pervasiveness of gender inequality perspective

  • Gender inequalities are pervasive across countries (rich as well as poor but not uniformly so)

  • Gender inequalities are pervasive across different groups within a society

  • Gender inequalities structure the relations of production and reproduction


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The potential for trade-offs - and synergies perspective

A gender perspective means recognising that women stand at the crossroads between production and reproduction, between economic activity and the care of human beings, and therefore between economic growth and human development…..


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The potential for trade-offs - and synergies perspective

…..They are workers in both spheres – those most responsible and therefore with most at stake, those who suffer most when the two spheres meet at cross-purposes, and those most sensitive to the need for better integration between the two (Gita Sen, 1995, p. 21)


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There is a ‘geography’ of gender inequality so….. perspective

different constraints to – and different priorities for –

public action in different contexts


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Halving world poverty: the opportunity costs of gender inequality

Addressing women’s productive capacity improves livelihood outcomes of the poor


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Female labour force participation and household poverty inequality

  • Relationship between household poverty and female labour force participation (regions characterised by norms of female seclusion)

  • Relationship between household poverty and female unemployment (Latin America and Caribbean)

  • Relationship between household poverty and gender disadvantage (everywhere)


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Gender inequality and household poverty: response to crisis inequality

  • Male unemployment and women’s work

  • Crisis and child labour

  • Family breakdown and female headship

  • Women as ‘buffers’ in times of crisis


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Gender inequality and human development: the instrumental rationale

Enhancing women’s capabilities improves outcomes in the sphere of reproduction

  • Control of fertility behaviour

  • Improving child survival

  • Improving nutritional outcomes

  • Children’s education

  • Closing gender gap in educational and other disparities


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Gender inequality and human development: the ‘intrinsic’ rationale

The persistence of inequalities between women and men, boys and girls in their enjoyment of basic human capabilities is a potent measure of the extent to which a society is prepared to tolerate suffering and injustice. It is not compatible with a vision of development which seeks to expand the capacity of all human beings to realise their full potential and to contribute to the making of the world they wish to live in.


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Gender equality and women’s empowerment: the nature of the challenge

They are workers in both spheres – those most responsible and therefore with most at stake, those who suffer most when the two spheres meet at cross-purposes, and those most sensitive to the need for better integration between the two (Gita Sen, 1995, p. 21)


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Gender equality and women’s empowerment: maximising synergy, minimizing trade-offs

  • Education for empowerment

  • Paid work for empowerment

  • Political mobilisation as empowerment


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