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Digital technology–from automation to fintech and smart apps–permeates nearly all aspects of business and economic growth. And as technology use increases, the culture of work itself is changing.
How do these transformations impact women in emerging markets? If there are fewer jobs, will men and women compete for more of the same jobs (even for roles traditionally held by women)? Will the jobs that are disappearing be those primarily held by women? Who will hold these new jobs? Can technology bolster women’s economic inclusion?
Join us for the 4th Annual Birdsall Conference on Women to discuss how technology and the future of work will impact women’s economic empowerment and the opportunities and challenges they could face. This event was supported in part by funding from the ExxonMobil Foundation.
9:30am: Welcoming remarks
Masood Ahmed (CGD)
9:40am: Conversation: The Future of Work and How Technology Change Affects Women
Charles Kenny (CGD)
Molly Kinder (New America)
10:30am: Presentation: Mobile Savings for Women Entrepreneurs
Mayra Buvinic (CGD)
Kate Scaife Diaz (Technoserve)
11:10am: Presentation: Gender Responsiveness in Digital Governance (Digital ID and other technologies)
Alan Gelb (CGD)
Anit Mukherjee (CGD)
11:50am: Panel Discussion: Leveraging the Policy & Private Sectors to Empower Women
Era Dabla Norris (Fiscal Affairs Division Chief, IMF)
Catherine Mclennan Highet (Technology Lead, Women's Financial Inclusion Community of Practice facilitated by CGAP)
Kate Saetang (Strategy Manager, Accenture Development Partnerships)
Revi Sterling (Director, Women Connect Challenge, USAID)
In a recent paper, Kate Ambler and coauthors studied the impact of one-season cash transfers for agricultural investment in Senegal and Malawi, using data from a randomized control trial (RCT) in each country. They found evidence that transfers reduced both the number of decision makers and female decision making in Senegal in the short-run, particularly for measures directly related to agriculture. However, the effects disappeared two years after the transfers. Conversely, the authors find transfers in the Malawi program led to robust transitory increases in these measures, seeing a greater impact related to the number of decision makers in the household persisting after two year period. Join us for the latest CGD Invited Research Forum to discuss these opposing findings on the effects of cash transfers on household decision making.
Indian agriculture remains vulnerable to the vagaries of weather, and the looming threat of climate change may expose this vulnerability further. Using district-level data on temperature, rainfall and crop production, Siddharth Hari’s paper first documents a long-term trend of rising temperatures, declining average precipitation and increase in extreme precipitation events. One key finding is that the impact of temperature and rainfall are felt only in the extreme: when temperatures are much higher, rainfall is significantly lower, and the number of “dry days” greater is than normal. He also finds that these impacts are significantly more adverse in unirrigated areas (and hence rainfed crops) compared to irrigated areas. Can policy makers react to the challenges of climate change and find ways to get “more crop for every drop?"
Estimating intergenerational mobility in developing countries is difficult because matched parent-child income records are rarely available and education is measured very coarsely. In particular, there are no established methods for comparing educational mobility for subsamples of the population when the education distribution is changing over time.
In their recent paper, Sam Asher and coauthors present new methods and new administrative data to overcome this gap, and study intergenerational mobility across groups and across space in India. They find that the intergenerational mobility for the population as a whole has remained constant since liberalization, but cross-group changes have been substantial. Rising mobility among historically marginalized "Scheduled Castes" is almost exactly offset by declining intergenerational mobility among Muslims, a comparably sized group that has few constitutional protections. These findings contest the conventional wisdom that marginalized groups in India have been catching up on average. The paper also explores heterogeneity across space, generating the first high-resolution geographic measures of intergenerational mobility across India, with results across 5600 rural subdistricts and 2300 cities and towns.