Discussion Paper Details

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Title: Female Empowerment: Impact of a Commitment Savings Product in the Philippines

Author(s): Nava Ashraf, Dean S. Karlan and Wesley Yin

Publication Date: March 2007

Keyword(s): commitment, female empowerment, household decision making, microfinance and savings

Programme Area(s): Development Economics

Abstract: Female 'empowerment' has increasingly become a policy goal, both as an end to itself and as a means to achieving other development goals. Microfinance in particular has often been argued, but not without controversy, to be a tool for empowering women. Here, using a randomized controlled trial, we examine whether access to an individually-held commitment savings product leads to an increase in female decision-making power within the household. We find positive impacts, particularly for women who have below median decision-making power in the baseline, and we find this leads to a shift towards female-oriented durables goods purchased in the household.

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Bibliographic Reference

Ashraf, N, Karlan, D and Yin, W. 2007. 'Female Empowerment: Impact of a Commitment Savings Product in the Philippines'. London, Centre for Economic Policy Research.