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Fridays Academy: Gender and the Labor Market

Ignacio Hernandez's picture

From Raj Nallari and Breda Griffith's lecture notes.

 

Status (II)

One of the indicators to measure progress toward MDG3 is the share of women in wage employment in the non-agricultural sector, albeit with no set target.  The motivation is as noted before – ‘an expected result of economic development would be for people to move from being contributing family workers and own-account workers to wage and salaried employment’ (ILO, 2007; p. 10).  The figure below examines the progress in the share of women in nonagricultural wage employment (and the proportion of seats in parliament held by women) by region. 

 

Progress in share of women in nonagricultural wage employment (and the proportion of seats in parliament held by women) by region

 

Source: Global Monitoring Report (2007)

 

The figure suggests that women’s share of nonagricultural wage employment has increased in all regions over 1990 to 2005.  In some regions, for example Europe and Central Asia, the increase has been significant (47 percent) compared to just 20 percent in Middle East and North Africa.  The increase was highest in highly urbanized upper-middle class countries (43 percent) and lowest in rural low-income countries (30 percent).  However the data do need to be treated with caution – increases may capture just a small proportion of the total labor force. It would be instructive to have data on the share of nonagricultural employment to total employment as a benchmark. Furthermore, the aggregative country data conceals inequalities within countries. As for the education variables discussed above, disadvantaged and excluded groups are less likely to be employed in nonagricultural paid work, see figure below.

 

Share of women in nonagricultural wage work by ethnicity

 

 

                                                                                                                                                         Source: Global Monitoring Report, 2007.