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Book cover: Advances in Gender Research

Advances in Gender Research

ISSN: 1529-2126
Series editor(s): Professor Vasilikie Demos, Professor Marcia Segal

Subject Area: Sociology and Public Policy

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Globalization and gender equality: A critical analysis of women's empowerment in the global economy


Document Information:
Title:Globalization and gender equality: A critical analysis of women's empowerment in the global economy
Author(s):Rifat Akhter, Kathryn B. Ward
Volume:13 Editor(s): Vasilikie Demos, Marcia Texler Segal ISBN: 978-1-84855-752-9 eISBN: 978-1-84855-753-6
Citation:Rifat Akhter, Kathryn B. Ward (2009), Globalization and gender equality: A critical analysis of women's empowerment in the global economy, in Vasilikie Demos, Marcia Texler Segal (ed.) Perceiving Gender Locally, Globally, and Intersectionally (Advances in Gender Research, Volume 13), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp.141-173
DOI:10.1108/S1529-2126(2009)0000013010 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article type:Chapter Item
Abstract:

Purpose – The main objective of this research is to explore the impacts of globalization on gender empowerment.

Methodology – This research uses a design that combines lagged cross-sectional and cross-sectional analyses. We have used ordinary least square regression. The sample size for this research is 48–70 nation-states. We have used gender empowerment measurement as an indicator of decision-making power that women in a society gain in decision making as a group.

Findings – Our findings illustrate variable effects of global economy on gender empowerment. Higher commodity concentration significantly lowers women's access to the formal and informal labor force and women's decision-making power after controlling for economic development, culture, and state's location in the global economy. Foreign direct investment lowers women's share in both the formal and informal labor force and women's decision-making power, while increasing women's share of secondary education. Thus, this research examines wider dimensions of women's experiences. We also find that some policies have positive effects, whereas others have negative effects on gender empowerment.

Originality/value of the chapter – Previous research on globalization and development has discussed the impacts of globalization on women's empowerment. However, researchers have either used women's access to formal work or education or gender development scores as an indicator of women's empowerment. Researchers have not captured women's empowerment completely. We have overcome this limitation by defining empowerment as a complex of access to resources (access to education, formal and informal labor force) and decision-making power (gender empowerment scores).


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