Plus ca change? Evidence on global trends in gender norms and stereotypes.

Seguino S
Salt Lake City, Utah, University of Utah, Department of Economics, International Working Group on Gender, Macroeconomics, and International Economics [GEM-IWG], 2006 Jul. 33 p. (GEM-IWG Working Paper No. 06-2)

Gender norms and stereotypes that perpetuate inequality are deeply embedded in social and individual consciousness and are as a result resistant to change. Gender stratification theories propose that women's control over material resources can increase bargaining power to leverage change in key institutions, prompting a shift to more equitable norms. By extension, policies that permit women to take on paid employment should serve as a fulcrum for gender equitable change. Is there any evidence to support this hypothesis? To test this requires a means to capture gender norms and stereotypes. The World Values Survey provides just such a mechanism, with a series of gender questions that span a 15-year period and 70 countries. This paper uses that data to analyze trends in norms and stereotype over time and across countries. The effects of two types of variables are - macroeconomic variables such as the growth rate of the economy and gendered employment variables - will be explored for their effect on norms. (author's)

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