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Enabling Access to Work Opportunities for Women in India
Last registered on June 10, 2020

Pre-Trial

Trial Information
General Information
Title
Enabling Access to Work Opportunities for Women in India
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0005153
Initial registration date
December 07, 2019
Last updated
June 10, 2020 7:58 AM EDT
Location(s)

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Primary Investigator
Affiliation
King's College London
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
King's College London
PI Affiliation
Indian Statistical Institute, Delhi
Additional Trial Information
Status
On going
Start date
2019-05-03
End date
2020-12-31
Secondary IDs
Abstract
In contrast to almost half of the world’s female population that is working, only about 25 percent of India’s half a billion adult females report being part of the labor force (United Nations 2013 and India’s Periodic Labor Force Survey 2017, respectively). This low rate of Indian women's labor market participation is puzzling for a country that has experienced rapid fertility transition (World Bank, various years) and broad increases in women’s educational attainment (Census of India 2001 and 2011), along with substantial economic growth since the 1990s. Instead, these changes have been accompanied by a consistently low share of women working in urban areas (Klasen and Pieters 2015) and a real reduction in the share of women working in rural areas, between 1987 and 2011 (Afridi, Dinkelman and Mahajan 2018) in India.

Previous work shows that low market returns to women’s work can be one factor, along with lack of ‘good’ jobs for women (Afridi, Dinkelman and Mahajan 2018; Afridi, Bishnu and Mahajan 2019) as the gender gap in educational attainment declines, explaining the low levels of women’s labor force participation. In addition, women’s job information networks are often narrow and restrictive (Calvo-Armengol and Jackson 2004; Mortensen and Vishwanath 1994), reducing their flow of information while social norms against women working can constrain their work status further (Field et al 2016a; Field et al 2016b).

We design an intervention in India’s capital, Delhi, to analyse both supply and demand side factors that inhibit women from working. Specifically, we address the employer-employee matching constraint by offering women (and their husbands) a chance to register with a job search aggregator. In another treatment, we offer the service to the woman’s friends as well, to study whether the response of the network differentially affects service take-up and employment status of women.

Most of our sample women and their spouses belong to the informal sector of workers, who are highly vulnerable to economic and health shocks. Following the COVID19 crisis and the subsequent national lockdown in India commencing 24 March 2020, we are also interested in examining the impact of this shock on their lives and livelihoods. In particular, we aim to study 1) the economic fallout of the COVID19 crisis on the livelihoods and incomes of the families in our study sample, who are either self-employed or daily wage-earners 2) the coping mechanisms that these vulnerable families adopt in responding to and in recovering from the crisis, specifically the role of their social networks 3) the effectiveness of policy response by the government in mitigating impacts of the crisis on these households' food security and income shock, especially comparing minimum income support with in-kind transfers (free grains) 4) the effects of the pandemic on mental and physical health of these individuals, during and in the aftermath of the health and economic crisis. Our study design will allow us to compare and contrast the effect of the pandemic on both men and women's outcomes, including on employment, mental and physical well-being. We intend to study these implications of of the COVID-19 crisis on our study sample by incorporating additional questions specifically related to the pandemic in our midline surveys.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Citation
Afridi, Farzana , Amrita Dhillon and Sanchari Roy. 2020. "Enabling Access to Work Opportunities for Women in India." AEA RCT Registry. June 10. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.5153-2.0.
Experimental Details
Interventions
Intervention(s)
We design an intervention in India’s capital, Delhi, to analyse both supply and demand side factors that inhibit women from working, by offering women (and their husbands) a chance to register with a job search aggregator. Our primary objective is to study the impact of the intervention on the employment status and the nature of work done by women and how these changes interact with the husband’s, woman’s and their network’s gender attitudes or perceptions, as well as the network’s response to the intervention.
Intervention Start Date
2019-12-04
Intervention End Date
2020-02-29
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Employment status and nature of work done by women. For more details, see analysis plan.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
See analysis plan.
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
See analysis plan.
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
See analysis plan.
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
Our primary treatment is to offer women (and their husbands) a chance to register with a job search aggregator. In a second treatment, we also offer the service to the woman’s friends as well, to study whether the response of the network differentially affects service take-up and employment status of the women.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomization will be done in office by a computer.
Randomization Unit
The unit of randomisation is a polling station, which is also our cluster
Was the treatment clustered?
Yes
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
108 polling stations (clusters)
Sample size: planned number of observations
Approx. 3000 wives and their husbands (couples), plus approx. 1000 wife's friends
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
36 clusters assigned to control, 36 clusters assigned to "couples' only" treatment, 36 clusters assigned to "couples plus wife's friends" treatment
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
IRB Name
IFMR Human Subjects Committee
IRB Approval Date
2019-02-15
IRB Approval Number
IRB00007107; FWA00014616; IORG0005894
Analysis Plan

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