Stagnancy in Female Labour Force Participation in India, says report

The percentage of women receiving education in India has been inclining steadily over the years. But despite such advantages, the percentage of women in the Female Labour Force Participation (FLFP) has been stagnant (18%) since 1980’s, states a World Bank report. Most of us don’t realize the serious implications this has on the growth of women and the advancement of the gender in general.


These implications are clear, according to the report: “High and rising female employment contribute to greater productivity growth and have been critical in sustaining East Asia’s high economic growth rates… Employment and earnings are robust determinants of bargaining power within the household, with impacts on female and children’s well-being. If there are structural economic or cultural barriers preventing women’s labor force participation, women are unable to capitalize on new opportunities.”


Labor force participation rate of married women, by education level Picture By: World Bank

Labor force participation rate of married women, by education level
Picture By: World Bank

There is also a complex relationship between the educational level of women and the FLFP. The likelihood of women being in the labor force decreases with education up to middle school, but increases with secondary education. This increase, the report states, can be attributed to the parents of the woman, peer influences or personal preferences. Along with this, there is also a persistence stigma attached to educated women working certain jobs.


If these current trends continue to exist then the FLFP is unlikely to increase in the coming years. This will also mean that women’s education will not contribute much to their economic empowerment, which should be worked upon by the policy makers, says the report.


ORIGINAL SOURCE: World Bank report

[Featured Picture Courtesy: Feminists Economics Posts]