Will Women in Low-income Countries Get Lost in Transformation? – ODI (2015)

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ODI, 2015 – 29 pages

Economic transformation is defined as the movement of resources (factors of production) to high-productivity activities, both within and between sectors. It encompasses both the process of structural change (movement of resources between sectors) and within sector labour productivity improvements. Focusing on low-income countries, where the problem of economic transformation is most acute, this paper analyses whether a particular economic change associated with transformation is likely to bring more opportunities for women. It develops an analytical framework that analyses how economic transformation might affect economic opportunities, choices, and welfare of women in low-income countries, and it organises the available evidence using this framework.

Main takeaway:

  • The paper argues that overall, the prospects for beneficial effects are good. However, as in other aspects of economic development, the extent of benefits for women depends on whether complementary policies are put in place to increase equality of opportunity.