Gender Inequality and the Demographic Dividend

Jeffrey Edmeades, International Center for Research on Women (ICRW)
Anju Malhotra, International Center for Research on Women (ICRW)
Margaret Greene, International Center for Research on Women (ICRW)

This paper explores the effect of gender inequality on the ability of countries to take advantage of the emergence of an age structure that is particularly favorable to economic growth, a process often referred to as the ‘demographic dividend’. While gender inequalities are increasingly acknowledged as influencing economic growth, little attention has been paid to how these affect the ‘dividend’. This paper focuses on two facets of gender inequality that are particularly important to economic growth and the demographic dividend: secondary education and labor force participation. The analyses are based on panel data from a range of countries, which are used to estimate a random-effects model of economic growth over the 1965-1990 period. The results from preliminary analyses suggest that gender differentials do have an effect on economic growth, both directly and through diminishing the positive effects of favorable age structure.

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Presented in Session 18: Demography with a Gender Lens