Gender Bias and Male Backlash as Drivers of Crime Against Women: Evidence from India


We explore the relationship between the gender gap in earning potential and crime against women in India. Combining survey data with administrative records on rapes, indecent assaults and domestic violence, we provide evidence of backlash - greater earning potential for women relative to men is associated with more rapes and indecent assaults. This relationship is not all driven by changes in reporting and is exacerbated in states with high gender bias. Greater relative earning potential for women is also associated with lower domestic violence, but only in states with low gender bias. Growth may thus exacerbate crime against women when institutions or culture are gender biased.  

This paper is co-authored with Debasis Bandyopadhyay and James Jones.

About the speaker

Asha Sundaram is a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Economics, Faculty of Business and Economics, University of Auckland. She has an MPhil in Economics from the University of Oxford, United Kingdom and a PhD in Economics from Syracuse University, United States. Her research interests are in the fields of International Trade and Development Economics. Topics she works on include the role of networks in international trade and the impact of globalisation on labour markets and firms. She has consulted for international organizations like the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and the Economic Research Institute for the ASEAN and East Asia. Visit her personal website >>

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To Attend the Event

The event will take place on 3 November 2020 Tuesday at 11:00 am HKT (GMT+). See corresponding times for different times zones).

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The next webinar in the series

17 November 11:00am

Atsushi Kato Waseda University Violent Conflicts and Economic Performance of the Manufacturing Sector in India 

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) .    


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