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Identifying Gaps in Gender Statistics In India

June, 2019

Women are key agents of change, and a move towards gender equality translates into increased economic empowerment for women; it also brings greater benefits for the society at large. As pointed out by McKinsey Global Institute, the economic impact of achieving gender equality in India is estimated to be US$700 billion of added Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 2025. But achieving gender equality necessitates measures to correct for existing disadvantages that prevent women from accessing productive opportunities. Gender data play an important role in this regard.

This study is an attempt to outline the existing gaps in available official data sources in India. The study has identified data gaps in key domains of women’s empowerment, namely, employment and wages, ownership of assets, access to basic amenities, financial inclusion, health, education, access to digital platforms, participation in decision making, and crime and violence, etc. The study highlights the need for more regular surveys on employment and wages, and time use surveys to better capture women’s paid and unpaid work, and also time spent on different unpaid activities. A multi-causal approach to data collection on migration, on earnings of the self-employed as well as on ownership and management of assets and businesses, at the individual level, is also recommended. Besides, a cohort study of young women, behavioural aspects, norms and opinions around women’s work, as well as data on mental health, learning outcomes, violence and individual access to digital resources, would provide a range of measures to investigate the issue of women’s empowerment.


Resource Type Working paper

Topics Gender gap, gender data, MGNREGA, NRLM, SSA, PMMY, TSC

Authors Shiney Chakraborthy, Ruchika Chaudhary