Rising Education, Declining Female Employment: An Indian Paradox

Esha Chatterjee, University of Maryland

Theories of human capital have emphasized the role of education increasing wages and ceteris paribus, increasing female labor supply. However, data from South Asia frequently document that modestly educated women have lower likelihood of labor force participation than uneducated women, however, the factors underlying this inverse relationship are poorly understood. In this paper, using data from India Human Development Survey of 2004-5, we examine the role of structural and cultural factors in shaping women's labor force participation, while holding incomes of other household members constant.

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Presented in Poster Session 3