2007 Women Economists Training Program

 date:2007-6-10 source:BiMBA         

                  Description of the Research Training and Mentoring Program for

                                  Young Women Economists

January 2007

1. Objectives

This training program is provided jointly by the Chinese Women Economic Research and Training Program at the Center of China Economic Research (CCER), Peking University, in May 2007 with the financial support from the Ford Foundation. The overall goal of the program is to improve the presence of women in economic research by helping young women scholars overcome two main obstacles they face: (a) lack of advanced, post-degree, hands-on research training, and (b) lack of access to the network of professional contacts in economics. The program has three specific objectives: (1) to provide rigorous training to women economists as a way to upgrade and re-invigorate their skills; (2) to provide mentorship to women economists to teach them how to do research through the point where they can present their work domestically and internationally and publish their work in top quality research outlets, and (3) to promote economic research and education on women/gender issues in China.   

Through a series of activities we hope that the program will contribute to building a critical mass of young women economists who are actively engaged in research using modern techniques and interested in and capable of providing research training and mentoring for junior scholars. Eventually we envision this becoming a regularly established “women's economic forum” where young women economists come for advanced training and learning about how to do economic research; where more established scholars come to refresh their skills and get help in becoming more recognizable in domestic and international circles; and finally, where established scholars come to share their skills and experience to help those who have not advanced as far in their careers.   

2. Description of the program


The training program consists of three parts.  The first part is to offer a two-week intensive training course in the Center of China Economics Research, Peking University in May 2007.  The objective of the training course is to increase the research capabilities of the students, and hence great emphasis will be placed on economic theories, research methodologies, and econometric skills. The course syllabus is attached below.  The second part of the program is to provide a one-to-one research mentoring for the participants based on the research proposal that each student presents at the end of the training course. The students will work collaboratively with their mentors to improve the way they design, implement, and carry out research based on their research proposal. The subject of the research proposal can be on any topic, and hopefully will be in an area in which the student can be assisted most effectively by one of the research mentors.  Research mentoring will be done mainly through email, telephone conversation and mail correspondence. The third part of the program is to invite the students to come back to present their research results for graduation at the 4th CWE International Workshop on Empirical Research Using Micro Data in June 2008.

The training course will be taught by three instructors: Professor Dong Xiao-yuan, the University of Winnipeg, Canada, Professor Nancy Qian, Brown University, US. and Professor Sarah Cook, Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex, UK. Research mentors will be selected from a pool of established Chinese and international scholars who have extensive experience in student supervision and statistical analysis, and have respectable research records. 


Training Course

Economic Research on Women and Development

January 2007

1.      Course Description

The objective of this two-week intensive training course is to provide students with analytical and empirical skills to do economic research using micro data.  The course is designed to increase the research capabilities of the students by placing special emphasis on economic theories, research methodologies, and econometric techniques.  The course covers various subjects in labor economics and policy evaluations with particular attention to women and gender issues in development. The students are trained to write research proposals and to do advanced econometric analysis using the computer software, STATA. 

2.      Course Structure

This course consists of 10 days of intensive studies from May 21 to June 1, 2007. The schedule of the course is as follows: On May 21, the opening day, the session starts from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm in the morning and from 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm in the afternoon; and from the 22nd of May and to the 1st of June, the class starts from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm in the morning and from 1:30 pm to 4:30 pm.  

On May 21, following brief remarks by representatives from the Ford Foundation and CCER and introductions of the instructors and students, each student presents her research proposal and receives feedbacks on the feasibility of the research design.


From May 22 to 31, the instructors give lectures and provide computer training. Each day is divided into three hours of lectures and three hours of hands-on training on computer programs and data analysis. The lectures will be pitched at very practical, research relevant materials. The empirical training will be focused on micro data analysis, and real data from each instructor's own research will be used in the computer training.  The students are expected to do readings and write their research proposals in the evening and over the weekend.  They are also encouraged to discuss their research interest in the class, and the instructors supervise them to revise their research proposals throughout the course. 

On June 1, the last day of the course, each student presents her research proposal in the class and makes her assessment of the training program and suggestions regarding how the program can be improved should it be offered in the future.  

3.      Course Outline and Reading List

Section 1: Gender, Labor Force Participation and Intra-household Allocations

By Professor Dong Xiao-yuan

May 22: 

Lecture: Gender, Development and Empirical Research

I.        Gender and Development

i. Gender inequality: Sen's Capability approach

ii. Gender inequality: causes and consequences


II.     Empirical Research

      i. Empirical modeling

       ii. Dealing with endogeneity

    a.   Instrumental Variable Estimation

b.       Simultaneous Equations Models

Computer Lab:  STATA Basics and IV, 2SLS and 3SLS methods 


May 23:

Lecture: Economics of Women's labor supply

I.        Theories of women's labor supply

II.     Empirical methods for estimating women's labor supply

Computer Lab: Regression analysis of women's labor supply

Probit, Tobit, and Sample Selection Models

May 24:

Lecture: Gender and Intra-household Allocations         

I. Theories of intra-household resource allocation     

i. Unitary models

   a. The wealth model

         b. The separable earnings transfer model

ii. Collective models

a. The efficient household models

b. The Nash-bargaining household models

II. Working-Lesser household expenditure models

i. Testing sex discrimination in intra-household allocation

ii. Estimating women's bargaining power within household

iii. Testing income pooling  

Computer Lab:  Regression analysis of household expenditure functions  



Angrist, Joshua D and Alan B. Kruger, “Instrumental Variable and the Search for Identification: From Supply and demand to Natural Experiments”. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 15(4): 69-85.

Deaton, Angus, “Looking for Boy-Girl Discrimination in Household Expenditure Data”. World Bank Economic Review, 3(1): 1-15, 1989.

Elson, Diane, 1999, “Labor Markets as Gendered Institutions: Equality, Efficiency and Empowerment Issues.” World Development, Vol. 27 No. 3: pp. 611-627.

Browning, M. and P. A. Chiappori, 1998, “Efficient Intra-Household Allocations: A General Characterization and Empirical tests.” Econometrica, 66 (6): 1241-1278.

McElroy, M. and Horney, M., “Nash-bargaining Household Decisions: Towards a Generalization of the Theory of Demand.” International Economic Review, 22: 333-348.

Killingsworth, M. and J. Heckman, 1986, “Female Labor Supply: A Survey”. Handbook of Labor Economics, Volume I, eds. O, Ashenfelter and R. Layard. New York: North-Holland.  


  Nakamura, Masao, Alice Nakamura, and Dallas Cullen, 1979, “Job Opportunities, the Offered Wages, and the Labor Supply of Married Women”, American Economic Review, 69(3): 787-805.

Pitt, M.M., M.R. Rosenzweig, and Md.N. Hassan, (1990). "Productivity, Health and Inequality in the Intra-household Distribution of Food in Low-Income Countries," American Economic Review, 80.5:1139-1156.

Thomas, D. (1990), "Intra-Household Resource Allocation:  An Inferential Approach," Journal of Human Resources, 25:635-664.

Strauss, John, Germano Mwabu and Kathleen Beegle, 2000, “Intra-household Allocations: A Review of Theories and Empirical Evidence,” Journal of African Economics, 9 (supplement 1): 83-143.


World Bank, 2001, Engendering Development: Through Gender Equality in Rights, Resources,   and Voice.  Summary and Chapter 4. Oxford University Press.  

  Wooldridge, Jeffrey M., 2006, Introductory Econometrics, Chapters 15, 16 and 17

Section 2: Women and Labor Market Outcomes (Tentative outline) 

Lecturer: To be announced.

May 25:

1. Theories of labor market discrimination


I.           Factors causing gender wage differential

II.       Labor market discrimination: definition

II.         Taste-based discrimination

III.        Occupational exclusion

IV.              Statistical discrimination

Computer Lab:  Measuring labor market discrimination

I.    Single equation method

II.     Group equations and Oaxaca decomposition

May 28:

2.  Measuring labor market discrimination


I.           Decomposing wage differential

II.       Omitted variables

III.     Skill differential

IV.    Occupational segregation

V.       Analyzing the trend in gender wage differential

Computer Lab:

I.                    Decompose wage differential by incorporating occupational attainment

II.                 Analyze changes in gender wage gap

May 29:

3.  Human Capital and Gender Wage Differential


I.                    The schooling decision

II.                 On the job training

III.               Empirical issues

Computer lab:

I.                    Estimating returns to schooling

II.                 Age-earning profiles

III.               Ability bias and correction

IV.              Selectivity bias and correction


Altonji J. G. And R. M. Blank, “Race and Gender in the Labor Market,” in O. C. Ashenfelter and D. Card (eds.) Handbook in Labor Economics, Vol. 3C, 3143-3259

Blau. F. D. and L. M. Kahn, “Gender Differences in Pay,” Journal of Economic Perspectives, Vol. 14, No. 4, 75-99, Fall, 2000

Oaxaca, R., 1973. “Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets,” International Economic Review, 14: 693-709.

Brown, R. S., M. Moom and B. S. Zoloth, 1980. “Incorporating Occupational Attainment in Studies of Male/Female Earnings Differentials,” Journal of Human Resources. 15: 3-28.

Blau, F. D. and L. M. Kahn, “Swimming Upstream: Trends in the Gender Wage Differential in the 1980s,” Jounal of Labor Economics, vol. 15, no.1, pt. 1, 1-42, 1997.

David, Card, "The Causal Effect of Education on Earnings," Handbook of Labor Economics, 1999, pp. 1802-1863.

Joshua Angrist and Alan Krueger, “Does Compulsory School Attendance Affect Schooling and Earnings?” Quarterly Journal of Economics, 106: 979-1014, 1991.

Section 4:  Gender, agricultural productivity, poverty and well-being

By Dr. Sarah Cook

May 29: Gender and productivity in agriculture


I.                    Introduction and overview of the issues

II. Definition of the household

a. Family versus household

b. Headship issues

III.               Modeling producer households

a.       Basic model

b.       Separability issues

c.       Alternative assumptions about household decision-making: feminist and anthropological critiques

IV. Empirical Methods and evidence (to be reconsidered?)

a.       Gender differences at the plot level

b.       Other measurement options

Computer Lab:  Empirical analysis of household production

a.       Modeling household production

b.       Estimating marginal returns to factors of production

c.       Investigating gender difference in input use and yields

May 30: Gender, poverty and well-being


V.                 Household decision-making and the allocation of resources (revisited)

a.       Theoretical considerations

b.       Empirical investigations and evidence

VI.              Household production and welfare: investments in health and education

VII.            Case studies: investing in women and children

a.       Returns to investments in females

b.       Does access to credit improve female well-being?

Computer Lab: Empirical methods

a. Female education and child health and welfare (Gender effect)

b. Time use and the well-being of women in the household


Pranab Bardhan and Christopher Udry, Development Microeconomics, ch. 2, “Household Economics,” Oxford University Press, 1999

Jennie Dey Abbas, “Gender Asymmetries in Intrahousehold Resource Allocation in Sub-Saharan Africa: Some Policy Implications for Land and Labor Productivity,” ch. 15 in Haddad, Hoddinott, and Alderman, eds., Intrahousehold Resource Allocation in Developing Countries: Models, Methods, and Policy, Johns Hopkins, 1997

Christopher Udry, John Hoddinott, Harold Alderman, and Lawrence Haddad, “Gender Differentials in Farm Productivity: Implications for Household Efficiency and Agricultural Policy,” Food Policy, vol. 20, pp. 407-423, October 1995

Agnes Quisumbing, “Male-Female Differences in Agricultural Productivity: Methodological Issues and Empirical Evidence,” World Development, vol. 24, no. 10, pp. 1579-1595, 1996

Timothy Besley, “Property Rights and Investment Incentives: Theory and Evidence from Ghana,” ch. 12 in Bardhan and Udry, eds., Readings in Development Economics, vol.  II, Empirical Microeconomics, MIT, 2000

Irene Tinker, “Women's Empowerment through Rights to House and Land,” ch. 1 in Tinker and Summerfield, eds., Women's Rights to House and Land: China, Laos, Vietnam, Lynne Rienner Publishers, 1999

Tran Thi Van Anh, “Women and Rural Land in Vietnam,” ch. 5 in Tinker and Summerfield, eds., Women's Rights to House and Land: China, Laos, Vietnam, Lynne Rienner Publishers, 1999

Li Zongmin, “Changing Land and Housing Use by Rural Women in Northern China,” ch. 16 in Tinker and Summerfield, eds., Women's Rights to House and Land: China, Laos, Vietnam, Lynne Rienner Publishers, 1999

Zhu Ling and Jiang Zhongyi, “Gender Inequality in the Land Tenure System of Rural China,” Unpublished paper.

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