Reshaping Adolescents' Gender Attitudes: Evidence from a School-Based Experiment in India


Societal norms about gender roles contribute to the economic disadvantages facing women in many developing countries. This paper evaluates a school-based intervention in India that engaged adolescents in classroom discussions about gender equality for two and a half years with the goal of eroding their support for restrictive gender norms. Using a randomized controlled trial, we find that the program made attitudes 0.18 standard deviations more supportive of gender equality, or, equivalently, converted 16% of participants' regressive views. In addition, self-reported behavior became more aligned with progressive gender norms, particularly among boys. The effects observed in the short run were still present two years after the program had ended. 

This paper is co-authored with Diva Dhar and Seema Jayachandran.  More>>

About the Speaker

Tarun Jain (Ph.D. Economics, University of Virginia) is an Associate Professor of Economics at the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad. His research focuses on understanding causes and consequences of human capital formation (for instance, with education and health), especially in the context of fast-growing developing countries. Gender is a topic of special research interest given that women face persistent barriers in economic advancement. Current research projects include examinations of how peers influence health and educational outcomes, the role of language in educational outcomes, and an evaluation of an innovative school-based gender attitude change program on gender attitudes and outcomes of students. His research has been published in leading peer-reviewed journals in economics. He writes frequently for media outlets such as the Economic Times, New Indian Express, Ideas for India, The Hindu and Mint. Visit his personal website >>

To Attend the Event

The event will take place on 20th October 2020 Tuesday at 11:00 am Hong Kong time (GMT+8)  (See corresponding times for different times zones).

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House Rules

  • We would like the webinar to be interactive. Attendees will be promoted to "panelists" to allow interaction with the speaker over camera and mic.  Please join with both audio and video available whenever possible.
  • It is advised to mute yourself when you are not speaking. This prevents any distractions due to background noise.
  • The chat function will be on, but the speaker may not see your chat message. Please consider raising your hand (blue hand button) or unmuting yourself to ask a question. 
  • This talk will be recorded for internal use only.  


This webinar is part of a series of Zoom events that explores issues in growth and development in India. The series' academic committee consists of Takashi Kurosaki (Hitotsubashi Institute for Advanced Study), Pushkar Maitra (Monash University and Sujata Visaria (Hong Kong University of Science and Technology).    

The next webinar in the series will be 

3 November 11:00am Asha Sundaram University of Auckland Gender Bias and Male Backlash as Drivers of Crime Against Women: Evidence from India

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