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Economic gender gap in the Global South: how institutional quality matters

Elena Barcena (), Medina‐Claros, Samuel () and Pérez‐Moreno, Salvador ()
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Medina‐Claros, Samuel: University of Malaga, Dept. Applied Economics
Pérez‐Moreno, Salvador: UNU-MERIT, Maastricht University, and University of Malaga, Dept. Applied Economics

No 2020-025, MERIT Working Papers from United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT)

Abstract: One of the most challenging gender gaps in the Global South remains in the economic sphere. This paper examines how public institutional quality affects the gender gap in economic participation and opportunities in 74 developing and emerging countries during the period 2006-2016. We find that the quality of public institutions is closely associated with the economic gender gap. Specifically, the protection of property rights, security guarantees and government efficiency seem to be the main factors associated to lower values of the economic gender gap. Nevertheless, public institutions do not matter equally throughout economically backward countries. Whereas in emerging countries, particularly in Latin America and the Caribbean, a broad variety of institutional aspects, including undue influence on judicial and government decisions, are closely related to the economic gender gap, in low-income developing countries, such as Sub-Saharan countries, the problems of ethics and corruption stand out as a key element against economic gender equality. Some significant policy implications are derived from our findings on the potential of public institutions reforms to reduce economic gender gap.

Keywords: economic gender gap; economic participation; economic opportunities; public institutions; developing and emerging countries (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: E02 J16 O34 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020-06-05
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-gen, nep-lab and nep-mac
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