Irrigation and gender roles

Journal of Development Economics Vol/Iss. 163 Elsevier Published In Pages: 1-15
By Fredriksson, Per G. , Gupta, Satyendra Kumar


Greater ancestral irrigation potential is associated with lower contemporary female labor force participation.


All four models tested on cross-country data showed a significant negative association between irrigation potential and female labor force participation. This relationship remained significant when tested with World Values Survey data, Afrobarometer data, and Asian Barometer data. When tested with SCCS/EA data, irrigation potential had a significantly negative effect on female participation in all agricultural activities except for land clearance (not significant) and milking (positive effect, p<.05).


Test NameSupportSignificanceCoefficientTail
Ordinary Least Squares, Ordered Logistic RegressionSupportedSee tables on pages 5, 7, 8, and 9See tables on pages 5, 7, 8, and 9UNKNOWN


Variable NameVariable Type OCM Term(s)
Ancestral irrigation potentialIndependentClimate, Soil
Female labor force participationDependentDivision Of Labor By Gender