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The Impact of Lending to Women on Household Vulnerability and Women's Empowerment: Evidence from India

Supriya Garikipati

World Development, 2008, vol. 36, issue 12, 2620-2642

Abstract: Summary Impact evaluation studies routinely find that lending to women benefits their households. However, a number of them also find that this may not empower the women concerned. This seemingly paradoxical conclusion is confirmed by our study with respect to a lending program in rural India. We investigate this result by examining a combination of loan-use data and borrower-testimonies. We find that loans procured by women are often diverted into enhancing household's assets and incomes. This combined with woman's lack of co-ownership of family's productive assets, we conclude, results in her disempowerment. If empowering women is a crucial objective, then the patriarchal hold on productive assets must be challenged.

Keywords: group; lending; household; vulnerability; women's; empowerment; India (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2008
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