Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research Indan Journal of Medical Research
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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2007  |  Volume : 126  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 328-340

Gender equity & human development


Ford Foundation Chair for Women & Sustainable Food Security, M. S. Swaminathan Research Foundation, Chennai, India

Correspondence Address:
Swarna S Vepa
Ford Foundation Chair for Women & Sustainable Food Security, M. S. Swaminathan Research Foundation, Chennai, India

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


PMID: 18032808

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The welfare of both women and men constitutes the human welfare. At the turn of the century amidst the glory of unprecedented growth in national income, India is experiencing the spread of rural distress. It is mainly due to the collapse of agricultural economy. Structural adjustments and competition from large-scale enterprises result in loss of rural livelihoods. Poor delivery of public services and safety nets, deepen the distress. The adverse impact is more on women than on men. This review examines the adverse impact of the events in terms of endowments, livelihood opportunities and nutritional outcomes on women in detail with the help of chosen indicators at two time-periods roughly representing mid nineties and early 2000. The gender equality index computed and the major indicators of welfare show that the gender gap is increasing in many aspects. All the aspects of livelihoods, such as literacy, unemployment and wages now have larger gender gaps than before. Survival indicators such as juvenile sex ratio, infant mortality, child labour have deteriorated for women, compared to men, though there has been a narrowing of gender gaps in life expectancy and literacy. The overall gender gap has widened due to larger gaps in some indicators, which are not compensated by the smaller narrowing in other indicators both in the rural and urban context.


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