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Gender issues in international trade

by Marina Fe B. Durano
1. Introduction
Trade policies have different consequences on women and men because women and men differ in their economic and social status. Women and men respond differently to economic and trade policies because they have different sets of private resources and levels of access to public ones. Status and control over resources are intricately woven into the sexual division of labor, the assignment of productive and reproductive roles. Thus, the economic impact of trade policy on the genders must look at price and quantity effects as they relate to the differential status of men and women and their different sets of resources. Meanwhile, the social and human development impact of trade policy must look at how choice sets have been altered and how alterations have affected women and men. Both kinds of impact analysis, in turn, help determine the changes in the welfare of both genders. What determines status and control over resources? And what determines women's and men's choice sets? Households operate in an environment structured by economic incentives and institutional constructs. The behaviour of household members is governed by institutions, both formal and informal, that determine each person's available set of behavioral choices with some choice sets larger than others. The economy, at the macro and meso level, through the price-quantity mechanism also determines behavioral choices by supplying the relative prices that households face as each member interacts (or not) with the market, that is, as each member fulfills his or her productive and reproductive roles. International trade policy influences both macro-economic and meso-economic variables, clearly. Gender issues in international trade, however, requires an investigation of the transmission mechanisms from policy formulation to implementation and from macro-economic and meso- economic indicators to micro-economic and social development indicators. 2. Objectives and Discussion Flow
The widening scope of international trade negotiations in recent decades forces those in the periphery of policy-making to take a comprehensive approach to analyzing the impact of these developments. This paper begins to show the many levels and pathways that the impact of trade can be felt by women and men. At best, the paper points out the links between macro, meso and micro levels of analysis. At least, it raises questions and possibilities for further exploration. What is hoped for is that a confirmation or rejection of the conjectures can be made as work around international trade issues proceeds. Participants can add new avenues as well as details and evidence as they see fit in order to contribute to a better understanding of gender issues in international trade. The rest of the paper is divided into eight parts showing different possible ways for research and analysis in gender and trade to advance. The third section briefly goes over the main assumptions of the basic international trade model and looks at how these assumptions can have a gender dimension. The fourth section discusses international trade and development. The fifth section looks at trade in relation to the macro-economy. The sixth section goes down to meso-analysis by at employment in industries or sectors. The seventh section focuses in on the household. Here, consumption effects are brought to light especially its possible interaction with production effects, which has yet to be investigated in the international trade context. Household level responses are multi-faceted and complex. Elaboration on cause and effect between trade and the genders require an explicit statement of how productive and reproductive roles change with the changes in prices, quantities and incomes due to trade. An eighth section talks about the role of institutions. Section nine is a reminder that women in poverty remain one of the most vulnerable groups, hence, special attention should be given to their needs. A short conclusion looks at the need for new and more data, policy alternatives and the development of coherent and effective advocacy strategies and campaigns. References are given at the end. 3. Assumptions of the Basic Trade Models
The gains from trade are based on a set of assumptions that oftentimes do not reflect reality. It will be useful to remind us these assumptions and to look at how these assumptions change when seen from the perspective of gender analysis. Much of the discussion in this section will find itself repeated throughout the paper in different contexts. 3.1 Resources are fixed, fully employed and internationally immobile The dynamic nature of international trade renders these assumptions weak. Physical and financial capital accumulation and human capital development change the level of resources over time. International trade contributes to further accumulation and development but this must be viewed with caution. In the context of unequal trade between rich and poor nations, this means that any initial state on unequal resource endowments will tend to be reinforced and exacerbated by the very trade that these differing resource endowments were supposed to justify (Todaro, 1996:437). One of the most important sources of inequalities in resource endowments is the history of colonization that shaped and is shaping trade patterns and relations between developed and developing nations. It cannot be denied that developed countries have been able to grow fast using their high endowments of capital, technology and skills and this level of growth is built on their past exploitation of their colonies. The developing countries, on the other hand, have been convinced that they should specialize in labor-intensive production (because that is where their comparative advantage lies) without any concrete proposals on how to increase capital, skills and technology, which is the basis for real and continued growth. At the micro-level, inequalities also exist between the genders in terms of access to and ownership of resources. Land, capital, credit, education and health are often in favor of men, although differences exist according to country and society. If trade favors those who have these resources then the benefits of trade are limited to those who have the resources, in many cases these would be men. Elson (1992) suggests that the seemingly neutral macro-economic policies become male-biased when implemented in a social context that discriminates against women. 3.2 Technology is fixed and freely available and there is consumer sovereignty The development of synthetic substitutes for natural products and the use of genetically- modified organisms in agriculture show that technology not only changes over time, their development can be detrimental to countries that rely on natural resources and agricultural production. Women's role in seed preparation and propagation in now being undermined as multinational corporations attempt to monopolize the development of new strains. The imitation of products and following the product cycle has helped newly-industrializing countries develop their industries but this path of development is now being challenged by what many see as restrictive rules on intellectual property rights. Advertising campaigns destroy the myth that consumers dictate the commodities that are produced by firms. Marketing and distribution networks of multinational corporations influence the consumption habits and in poor developing countries, these financial giants dominate local advertising. At the same time, advertising and marketing strategies promote a culture of gender stereotyping. 3.3 Factors are mobile across sectors and there is perfect competition New opportunities accorded by trade can be exploited if firms and factors are flexible and ready to move to new areas. However, such shifts are difficult to undertake when structural rigidities in the form of poor economic and social infrastructure and unsupportive political and institutional structures are present. Even these rigidities inhibit women's ability to respond to trade stimuli. Access is obviously weaker for those who live at a distance from markets and who are denied the use of competitively priced transport. Access is also limited by inconvenient trading hours and imperfect availability of information (Palmer, 1995: 1982). The sexual division of labor within the reproductive sphere serve as limitations to a woman's ability to move between sectors as well. Not only do we have to ask how well women can move into and out of the sectors whose comparative advantage has changed with the new trade policies but also how women and men move between the productive and reproductive sectors, among other markets. 3.4 National governments do not play a role in trade National governments are active participants in determining the direction of trade. Many attempt to jump-start economic growth by forcing the development of comparative advantage in certain industries. Many governments have tried to encourage the entry of foreign investors by promoting industries that use unskilled or low-skilled labor coupled with labor rights repression. A vast majority of workers in export enclaves and export-processing zones are women and to the extent that governments continue to rely on this method of industrialization, women have become the backbone of industrialization efforts. Although, this assumption is rather extreme, there remains some belief among policy-makers that a small government (through privatization and deregulation) is the preference. Rather than simplifying the question into one of size, a better approach would be to find out how government can best serve the needs of its constituents acknowledging the benefits from economic efficiency without sacrificing the goals of human development. 3.5 Trade is always balanced and international prices adjust instantaneously Not only must export and import prices adjust swiftly but exchange rates must also move quickly in order to bring trade and payments to balance. Clearly, this is not realistic. Serious trade and payments deficits have led many economics to recessions. (The debt-ridden countries find themselves in such a bind that participation in trade only serves to pay for foreign loans instead of contributing to development, which it supposedly does). There is prevalent use of non-market pricing systems (including trade instruments) even in developed countries that heavily promote the benefits of free trade. Moreover, the exchange rate is too important a macro-economic policy instrument that few governments would be willing to let it float freely. 3.6 Gains from trade accrue to nationals In order to ascertain who actually gains from trade the ownership of the traders must be ascertained. In too many instances, these owners are foreigners that have claims on mining resources or plantations. Foreign direct investment is pervasive as capital searches for highest returns throughout the globe. Nationals participate in trade mostly as consumers and workers. As such the divide between rich and poor nations is only perpetuated. 4. Trade and Development
Trade as a component of aggregate demand was called the 'engine of growth' by Nurkse, acknowledging that it offered possibilities for new markets, new goods and services, new factors of production and the benefits of increased efficiency due to competition. Trade and development have been discussed mainly through trade's role in promoting growth and employment. The possibilities for faster growth have led many countries to shift from inward-looking (import-substituting) strategies for industrialization to export-oriented ones over the past few decades. The shift, successful or not, resulted in an increase in the number of export enclaves and export-processing zones and the promotion of export-oriented industries through various incentives such as subsidies, tax packages and favorable exchange rate policies. Today, trade policy is not simply a matter formulated within national borders rather it is as much the outcome of negotiations in different kinds of trading arrangements. Each type of arrangement brings with it a different set of parameters that eventually determine trade's impact on women and men. Much of the impact of trade policy will work through the employment route as trade changes income levels and employment opportunities in the productive sector. Another route is found through the new technologies, methods and processes (as well as social rules and cultural values) that increased international trade introduces. These new methods could change the division of labor and livelihood strategies of men and women. For example, the importation of machinery to mechanize a labor-intensive task once undertaken by women may lead to job loss for women not only because of the machine's labor saving function but also because machinery is associated with men and, hence, may result in a substitution of female labor for male labor. It becomes an important matter to acknowledge that people interact with technology and the market and that people's lives change as a result of changes in the distribution of resources as countries open up to trade. Thus, trade policy is directly connected to human development, which is concerned with dais interactions and changes. In particular, as more countries increase their trade with others, people's choice sets are altered with the addition or removal of alternatives within each set that they face. The social impact refers to how choice sets change with respect to nutrition and health, skills and education, and the ability to meet basic needs. Thus, the challenge that is presented to policy-makers is unraveling the nature of the relationships between globalization, macro-economic policy, development and poverty with a gendered lens. 5. Trade and the Macro-economy
Much of the literature using a gender-based analysis of structural adjustment programs deals with the relationships just mentioned. Although the analysis centers on the reduction of government spending and its social impact, the impact of trade liberalization policies on the macro-economy can be studied in terms of reducing the available budget for social expenditures via the reduction of tariff revenues. This result is important since many governments, especially in industrialized economies, have assumed partial responsibility for some reproductive activities (that women have borne in most cultures and throughout most of history in addition to their productive activities) (Cagatay, Elson and Grown, 1995:1828). The analysis is easily extended to include international trade through the exploration of the relationship between tariff revenues and the government budget. In doing so, the stage of development of a country becomes an important factor in the analysis considering that tariffs may be an important source of government revenue for countries with poorly developed income and property tax collection systems. Government spending is only one of the components of aggregate demand. What will be a good way of analyzing the impact of trade policy on the other components, that is, on consumption and investment? Trade policy instruments raise or lower the prices of imported goods and services relative to locally produced ones. Consumption patterns are expected to change through an income effect and an expenditure switching effect. These changes in demand will find themselves reflected in changes in employment levels. The relationship between trade and investment is more complex and there is much room for raising gender issues in this area. So far, patterns of investment, for example, the choice of industry for export promotion, may be a first step. Another area may be to look into women-led firms, which have become an important force in employment for industrialized countries where data was available (APEC, 1998). 6. Meso-analysis: Employment in Industries
The household and the macro-economy are linked through the employment sector. In the circular flow model of the economy, households are both consumers of goods and services and suppliers of factors of production that go into producing the same goods and services. As employment opportunities increased with the opening of economies to trade, women have been increasing their amount of involvement in the labor market as evidenced by the rapid rise in female labor participation rates. Gender analysis of trade policy mainly focus on income and employment effects (Fontana, Joekes and Masika, 1998:5). Industries are classified according to the proportion of females they employ and the impact of trade policy on those industries is extended as the impact on women. Thus, several studies look at textile and garment industries and electronics industries, which employ women heavily. Studies noting the increasing participation of women in export-oriented industries and export-processing zones are in the dame vein. These studies offer the chance to further investigate issues on allocative efficiency, referring to hiring practices and their link to productivity differentials between male and female workers. Allocative efficiency in agricultural households has also been studies but methodological and empirical issues remain. Of particular importance are the establishment of the relationships among male-female differences in productivity, intra-household allocation, and the relative scarcities of labor (Quisumbing, 1996). Another suggested approach to finding methods for examining gender issues at this level was to search for empirical regulations linking various forms of gender inequality (such as labor market discrimination or wage differentials) to trade policy. Sex-disaggregated data is necessary to establish where women are in the economy, that is, which industries employ them. Then a determination of whether these industries are tradable or non-tradable or whether they are export-oriented or import competing is important since the impact of trade policy differs accordingly. Haddad et .al. (1995) suggest dividing industries into three sectors: (1) non-tradables (both consumer and capital goods), (2) exports and unprotected import substitutes; (3) protected import substitutes. Beneria and Lind (1995) focus on specialized sectors such as the informal sector and small-scale agriculture. Studies using partial and general equilibrium analysis predicting the employment effect of various trade policies and agreements would help point to the direction of change for women's employment, albeit they hardly differentiate employment effects by sex. Dynamic approaches (such as those in endogenous growth models) rather than the more common comparative statistics approach may produce more interesting results since the time dimension is added to the analysis. It may also be interesting to look into occupational segregation, especially in the professions as the WTO prepares to discuss services trade. Women dominate the professional and technical occupational category but most of them are nurses, midwives and teachers. Women also dominate the services occupations but most of them are maids and housekeepers and care related service work (Anker, 1998). In the GATS, discussions on professional services currently concentrate on the accountancy sector. 7. Household and the Economy Consumption
effects of trade policy remain useful especially when some trade policy is justified by the need for expenditure switching in order to bring exports and imports closer to balance. In addition, tariffs are simply taxes on imported goods, and hence are indirect taxes on that part of the consumption basket that is imported, the significance of which necessarily depends on the importance of imported goods in the consumption basket. That tariffs are taxes implies that public finance literature on indirect taxes may be useful. Public finance would likely refer to effects on individuals rather than on households or genders but extensions can be explored. Production and consumption are not necessarily completely separable especially in agricultural households. Prices of commodities produced by the farm household affect its level of income because it determines sales revenues. If the price of rice decreases due to the removal of trade restrictions, this will have a (negative) profit effect, which reduces the agricultural households' total income. The profit effect runs opposite the income effect of the price decline by increasing real income. Thus, the net result on consumption would depend on which effect is more dominant. (See Singh, Squires and Strauss, 1986). Lofgren and Robinson (1999) with extensions to the basic model consider these households behaviour using a computable general equilibrium model with international trade. It would now be useful to use these methods to isolate the gender differences of the changes to the trade regime by identifying the methods by which gender can be incorporated into models such as these. Much of the discussion on employment and consumption effects misses out on the decision-making processes inside a household that would be more descriptive of gender relations. Furthermore, they are limited to responses in the productive sphere. A household's response to price stimuli may be in one of two forms. First is a change in its composition when a household's membership changes through migration, for example. The second and more substantial involves changes in its internal dynamics, particularly the relationship among members with respect to their productive and reproductive roles. The opening up of markets and economies produce push and pull factors that induce some or all members of the household to move from rural to urban areas and from one country to another. The feminization of international migration has received much attention in the past decade with the rise in numbers of women seeking work as domestic helpers and entertainers and a significant number have become victims of trafficking. It would then be interesting to explore what determines the decisions to choose which household member migrates and how this decision is related to trade policy, if they are. More interesting but also more complicated is Rogers' (1990) framework for bringing out factors affecting intra-household dynamics and understanding the gender differences. While the factors relate more to responses to public projects, they remain useful for this exercise. The four broad areas to be considered are: (1) the amount of time available to different household members for participation in the project; (2) the allocation of household tasks to different members and the degree to which these tasks are transferable among members; (3) differential access to goods, both for production and consumption; and (4) differential control over income (Rogers, 1990: 5) Household responses to changes in macro-economic variables will vary according to the four factors mentioned above. The combination of the four depends on how culture structures the role expectations between the two sexes and between child and adult. As such, policy makers stand to benefit from an understanding of the dynamic relations among these factors and role expectations. In the case of trade policy, policy makers must learn to ask how trade will impact on the four areas of time availability, task allocation, access to resources and control over income. Since most of international trade affects households through income and prices, these areas must be analyzed using these variables. While there have been several studies separately discussing these four factors, the discussions are not clearly linked to trade policy. The challenge then is to find the theoretical links and empirical tests to see how the original results change with changes in trade policy. These four areas, in turn, are connected to men's and women's voice and exit within a bargaining framework of the household. Katz (1997) defined voice as the right and ability to bargain while exit referred to the right and ability to make threats credible and real. Will changes in trade structures eventually find themselves expressed in the ability of men and women in the context of marriage to bargain with each other? Various models of intra-household bargaining have been forwarded but, again, there is a need to see how men's and women's behaviour in these models change when trade policy changes the value of the parameters in bargaining and decision making. Time has opportunity cost: using it for one activity precludes the pursuit of another. The value of one's time may be measured in terms of the value of goods and services one produces per unit of time spent on an economic activity. It may also be measured, negatively, in terms of the value of such goods and services that do not get produced because the individual decided not make use of his or her time. The questions obviously call for households to rank the importance of the contribution of each member to the overall household welfare, as well as for a prior comparison of the welfare effects of the new trade policy with the welfare to be lost due to time spent for responding to the incentives brought on by the new set of policies. The ranking of these contributions may have to be done using several parameters: monetary vs. non-monetary contributions, member-specific labor vs. substitutable labor, the possibility of compensating for the loss in welfare due to a member's withdrawal from a customary task, etc. Who responds to the new trade structure would determine the impact on the household. Participation by the wife would reduce time spent at reproductive work. Children's involvement in household work could mitigate the loss of the mother's labor time for household tasks, if they are old enough. (However, if children must sacrifice schooling just to help in household tasks, then some future income is also sacrificed. In conditions of extreme poverty, even children may have to work with child labor contributing to overall household income). Task allocation, the assignment of tasks, between genders within the household varies across cultures. It is flexible and changes according to circumstance. It has been found that women can take over men's tasks more readily that men can adopt those of women, but changes in task allocation occur in both directions (Rogers, 1990: 6). The sexual division of labor may be less stringent in poorer households because they may not be able to afford the luxury of constraints on productive work. An important consideration in task allocation is the transferability of tasks among household members, as well as the equity of the resulting new allocation. Taking advantage of opportunities brought on by trade policy can become additional burdens if the household is unable to find the resources needed to pass on specific tasks. Task assignments become a crucial part of children's socialization process. A wife's task is shifted to the daughter and the husband's to the son. Extended family systems can probably cope better since more labor is available. Household members may have unequal access to goods owned or obtained by the household. The argument has been made that foods, as well as other goods such as health care and education, are allocated within the household according to the perceived economic contribution of the members (Rogers, 1990: 7). With gender playing a part in the determination of household roles and contributions of the members of the family, resource allocation may also be influenced by gender. This takes us back to the earlier discussion on the distribution of resources that would determine the ability of individuals and households to respond to changing trade incentives. It is important to find out how these resources correlate with sectoral mobility. How do men and women differ in terms of sectoral mobility? How do we measure assess differences in sectoral mobility? Having access to resources is not the same as controlling them. Control over income directly translates to bargaining power and make threats more credible. It is then tempting to pronounce that enlarging women's income opportunities and raising their incomes would weaken men's dominance. It is only the amount of income that matters but the form (cash or kind), periodicity (regular or irregular), and the earner (father, mother, daughter or son) as well. Policies that alter these characteristics could change the internal dynamics among household members. Control over income means control over its disposition. This raises the obvious question of who gets to decide on how to use the family income. Unfortunately, this question cannot be answered by the current state of data. What may be answered is how decisions over income manifest themselves into spending patterns by households. Initial results show that women tend to spend their income on food rather than on alcohol and tobacco. These patterns, however, do not give the analyst enough information to lead one to conclusions about the probable gender-based distribution of consumption goods and, consequently, welfare within households. 8. Institutions
The macro-economy, the household, and the individuals that comprise the household cannot be taken in isolation of institutions that govern the behavior of members of an economy and society. Institutions are the rules of the game in a society or, more formally, are the humanly devised constraints that shape human interaction. In consequence they structure incentives in human exchange, whether political, social or economic (North, 1990: 3). An understanding of the impact of international trade cannot be completed without identifying the structural and institutional factors that contribute to or limit trade's potential for development. Institutions are formal and informal. Formal institutions usually refer to structures that have explicit (or written) rules for governance, the most obvious example of which is government. Informal institutions refer to norms, which are informal rules that are formed to explain and evaluate each individual's environment based on their perceptions and experiences, which are sometimes influenced by organized ideologies such as religion, philosophy, and socio-political values. To illustrate the importance of institutions in this framework, reference can be made to the role of perceptions in explaining why women eventually get low-income, low productivity and often casual or temporary work. The ILO (1995) identified the following reasons, into: -Women's reproductive and domestic responsibilities are generally perceived to be their primary function. -Women are perceived to be mere secondary income-earners. -Women face unequal access to productive resources and services although they are largely dependent on self-employment for which, land, capital, technology and labour are critical. -Women's work tends to be undervalued. (ILO: 1995, 10) These are perceptions. Even though there are formal legal structures and international commitments (such as the Beijing Declaration) that prohibit discrimination based on sex, informal mechanisms remain strong placing limits on women's and men's work. Trade policies should not reinforce these biased informal structures and the challenge is finding out how to prevent such reinforcement. Among the important institutions that need to be studied are those that revolve around the formal processes of policy formulation and decision-making. Although the women's movement has led to many advances in political participation, there remains much ground to be covered in terms of ensuring that social and economic structures recognize women's contributions to the economy and uphold their rights and welfare. In a trading environment, very few, if at all, international trading agreements and institutions include women in their negotiating teams, panels and missions. More importantly, however, fewer still acknowledge the differential impact of trade on men and women and the need to respond to the differences. More often than not, women and men are reactive with respect to trade policy and not active participants in policy-making. The World Trade Organization, in particular, should consider gender mainstreaming activities, gendered policy formulation, and gender impact assessment of WTO-led trade liberalization as integral to their operation, particularly in terms of their role in promoting increased trade. Since the WTO does not exist in isolation, ways and means to promote institutional cooperation and consultation on related matters must be explored. The neoclassical (a.k.a. mainstream, neo-liberal) approach does not take institutions into consideration and instead places much faith in the ability of the friction-less market, which assumes instantaneous adjustments, to solve resource allocation problems. While the market may be able to deal with the challenge of efficiency, its view on equity is less than desirable. Elson (1998) describes the current trends succinctly: 'Globalisation and flexibilisation thus go hand in hand with a narrowing of commercial values to those of the market in which all that matters is the best price for the next deal; and with a narrowing of regulatory values to those of the minimal safety net. Gains from trade accrue to those who possess the sources of comparative advantage. The results depend on the initial distribution of endowments, which has in many developing countries been determined by colonial history and class conflict. Thus, the market, wittingly or unwittingly, only perpetuates and reinforces the unequal distribution of political and economic power.' Among countries, unequal distribution of power is reflected in issues related to sovereignty, strategic trade policy and competing trade structures. Among classes, the difficult process of including the social clause in trade agreements reflects the nature of capital-labor relations. And between the genders, ownership and control of resources are usually more concentrated in men than in women. Even the sexual division of labor is perpetuated as discriminatory labor markets determine the kinds of occupations and specify the industries that men and women work in as well as the relative wage rates that men and women receive. Needless to say, these issues are inter-related to determine outcomes unique to each permutation. Not only is the impact of trade governed by institutions, institutions in turn are affected, most obviously in terms of the preservation of cultures and traditions facing competition from foreign influences. Thus, women and men, households and communities interact in an environment where the economy and various institutions set the limits to possible and acceptable actions. At the same time, the economy and institutions are subjected to reform and change as women and men, households and communities attempt to shape their environment according to their economic and socio-political goals. 9. Women, Families and Communities in Poverty
The preceding discussion has attempted to find conceptual links between gender issues and trade policy. So far, however, it has been looking at women as if they were a homogenous group. Clearly that is not the case. There is evidence that many of the poor are women. Women in poverty are least likely to take advantage of any opportunities that may be made available by trade liberalization. Trade adjustment assistance and safety nets are at best concessions to market frictions. A more realistic view of the market would not only mean strengthening these mechanisms to protect the vulnerable but also trade policy must empower the vulnerable, removing them from a situation of weakness and dependence and placing them in a position of strength and self-reliance. Once again, the role of trade in poverty alleviation and economic development must be more clearly defined. 10 Concluding remarks
Throughout this paper, data requirements have made themselves clear. Generally, the type of data required would be a time series allowing us to search for differences between pre-liberalization and post-liberalization regimes. Needless to say, data must be disaggregated by sex. Analysis would also differ according to the specific circumstances of a country or region. Generalizations may be attempted if data were comparable across borders, although Haddad, et al. (1995) caution that initial conditions and experiences are specific to each country. From the data identified, indices and indicators can be developed to chart the impact of international trade on the genders, particularly on women in poverty. The choice of indicators is crucial when undertaking empirical tests. When trade policy is implemented as part of larger macro-economic package (e.g., a structural adjustment package), it will be difficult to isolate the impact of trade policies from other macro-economic policies as well as to decompose trade impact apart from exogenous factors such as global price trends and weather patterns. The time dimension of these data sets is extremely important in order to differentiate short-term impact and long-run results of the policies in question. On the other side of the equation is the difficulty of choosing the appropriate indicators to represent the welfare of women and men, families and communities. New methods of analysis, both qualitative and quantitative, must bring out the nuances behind gender relations in trading environment. These methods can help policy-makers undertake gender-aware policy appraisals needed to prevent the perpetuation of discriminatory systems. The following table is a checklist of intra-household data that the FAO-SEAGA suggests should be developed for better understanding and analysis of gender issues and macro-economic policy. One of the challenges will be to find the relationships between the data sets in this table and those of trade policy instruments. Checklist for Minimum Intra-Household Data Set
Household Structure and Composition Relationship between residential unit, consumption or production unit, and kinship unit. Dependency rations, and sex ratios by sex of household head Migration patterns by sex of household head Resource Distribution Within the Household Land: amount, quality, mode of access, and distance by sex. Access to and control over labor (both household and outside labor) by sex Access to, sources and terms of, capital or credit by sex. Asset holdings by sex. Educational status by sex, skill levels by sex, access to extension and training opportunities by sex. Membership in or access to outside networks: kin, local associations, cooperatives, development or state projects, by sex. Time and Task Distribution Patterns within Households Time-use patterns of various household members, daily, weekly, seasonal changes. Responsibilities of various household members for domestic tasks, fetching fuel, water, cropping and livestock activities etc. Income and Employment Patterns within Households Outside employment of each household member, number and type of jobs, time involved etc. Income: sources, nature (cash/kind), regularity, control (pooled, shared or separately controlled), by sex and age. Differences and Expenditure, Consumption Patterns and Welfare Status within Households Expenditure patterns by sex and age. Consumption patterns by sex and age. Nutrition, health status by sex and age. Source FAO-SEAGA (1997) In too many instances, progress in analyzing gender issues has been deterred by the lack of appropriate data, be they sex-disaggregated data or intra-household level data, especially at the national level. It is time that this shortcoming is addressed. The usefulness of this framework will be proven when policy prescriptions can be derived from them. The necessary advocacy strategies can then be developed as the relationships among the various concepts and systems are further elucidated. There are already many different campaigns currently being undertaken addressing the issues that fall into one or more of the linkages outlined in this paper. Advocacy strategies can then begin to incorporate the alternative arrangements that give women a chance to determine their future in international trade. References
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