Violence and Female Labor Supply
Zahra Siddique ()
No 11874, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)
This paper explores whether fear and safety concerns have an impact on behavior such as female labor supply in a developing country context. The effect of media reported physical and sexual assaults on urban women's labor force participation in India is investigated by combining nationally representative cross-sectional microeconomic surveys carried out between 2009 and 2012 with a novel geographically referenced data source on media reports of assaults. I find that a σ increase in lagged sexual assault reports within one's own district reduces the probability that a woman is employed outside her home by 0.44 percentage points (or 3.6% of the sample average). I find this effect despite ruling out several sources of unobserved heterogeneity. This effect is also robust to a number of sensitivity checks. Consistent with a model in which women make investments to overcome fear in the presence of economic incentives, I find that the effect of local violence on labor supply is weaker among women from poorer households. I also find this effect to be weaker among high caste Hindu women, but strong among Muslim women.
Keywords: economics of gender; labor supply (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J16 J22 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 38 pages
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Forthcoming - forthcoming as 'Media reported violence and female labor supply' in: Economic Development and Cultural Change, 2021
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:iza:izadps:dp11874
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