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Determining critical factors of gender inequality: Evidence from 34 OECD and non-OECD countries

Seh Young Kim

World Development Perspectives, 2021, vol. 21, issue C

Abstract: As gender inequality is a complex concept, this paper adopted multi-level (macro and micro) and multi-perspective analyses (OECD versus non-OECD and gender) based on five models (capability-, livelihood-, formal institution-, informal institution-related and power distance models) comprising 17 factors to examine different impacts and identify critical determinants of gender inequality considering various cultural, social and institutional backgrounds. Secondary data of 18 OECD and 16 non-OECD countries were employed for the regression analyses (multivariate and bivariate) to figure out which factor affects gender inequality to what degree. The research findings showed that five models have impacts on gender inequality and fertility rates of the capability-related model worsen inequality the most in the macro-level analyses. Regarding the micro-level analyses, the perception toward business executives of the informal institution-related model remarkably hampered gender equality. 11 factors in the five models had significant impacts on non-OECD countries that underlines the necessity of government interventions in socio-economic fields and institutional reforms for non-OECD countries. The percentage of total employment (employees) of the livelihood-related model affected at all levels. The findings highlight the crucial roles of financial empowerment and institutions as well as the interrelations with formal and informal institutions. Based on the results, the key policy implication is conducting the political reforms to guarantee equal rights, including equal access to resources and to transform gender-biased formal and informal institutions.

Keywords: Gender inequality; Capabilities; Livelihoods; Institutions; Empowerment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.wdp.2020.100284

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