Does Gender Inequality Affect Economic Growth? Empirics from Asian Countries.
Background: Gender inequality is present in our society in different areas of life. Moreover, world organizations acknowledge the importance of gender inequality control and list it as one of the Sustainable Development Goals. Though the standing of gender inequality cannot be denied as a social issue, it is vital to analyze its impact on other areas as well. This study specifically analyzes the impact of gender inequality in education on economic growth and how gender inequality can affect economies' short-run and long-run potential.
Methodology: This study examines the extent and dimensions to which gender inequality affects the economic growth of Asian countries. The study employs an annual dataset from 2003-2018 comprised of 48 Asian countries. World Bank data set is used. Panel data analysis is the basis of the study. The empirical analysis begins with a fixed / random effect. Moreover, sensitivity analysis was also used to check the robustness of initial results.
Results: This study shows that gender inequality at the tertiary level of education affects the economic growth in the selected Asian countries. Since gender inequality at the tertiary level of education is directly associated with the quality of gender mix in the labour market, its impact is reflected in this empirical work. However, gender parity in education at the primary level was found not to be significant in its contribution to GDP growth. Though the impact of gender inequality at the primary level is not found to be statistically significant, reasonably, this inequality will result in a lower potential in the long run. In all the models having population growth, the impact of gender parity was found to be positive.
Conclusion: This study concluded that reducing gender inequality on the tertiary level of education positively affects economic growth. Moreover, the study emphasizes that there is a necessity to increase women's education and lowering gender inequality at different levels of educational attainment to boost long-run and short-run economic potential.
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