Department of Social & Policy Sciences

CDS Blog: Why the Gender Dummy doesn’t speak: Explaining the gender gap in financial inclusion

Sun Dec 15 11:33:00 GMT 2013

Johnson Blog Post Image CDS Director Dr Susan Johnson has contributed the most recent post to the   Centre for Development Studies DevLog. "  Why the Gender Dummy doesn’t speak: Explaining the gender gap in financial inclusion" explores the recent research on the difference in access to formal financial services between men and women.  Looking at the gaps by region based on the Global Findex dataset, Dr Johnson looks at a myriad of explanatory factors. 

"With this evidence for the gender gap, what we really want to know is: what it is about being a woman or man that creates the gap? That is, are these gaps the result of factors such as women having less education, lower incomes and being less likely to have formal employment? Or do they arise from legal factors such as property rights, inheritance rights, gender norms about autonomy, mobility, etc.? Or, perhaps women behave inherently differently and are more risk averse. Or does being a woman matter for another reason, even when all these factors are taken into account? If it does, then we might need to look further for other sources of discrimination in the market. These might include the behaviour of the financial institutions themselves."

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