Project Name: CHOICE, CONSTRAINTS AND THE GENDER DYNAMICS OF LABOUR MARKETS IN BANGLADESH
Name of Donor: Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) 
Project Duration: April 2014 – November 2017
Principal Investigator Naila Kabeer, Professor, LSE
Research Team: Simeen Mahmud, Lopita Huq, Sadia Mustafa, Kabita Chowdhury, Saiful Islam, Sanjida Parvin, Sufia Khatun , Mohammad Hossen Khan, Saklain Al Mamun
Cluster: Gender Cluster


The research will address the following overarching question under the Joint Fund for Poverty Alleviation Research (2012-13): what approaches are most effective in enabling the poorest to exit and stay out of poverty and under what conditions can such approaches be replicated elsewhere and at what scale? It will also have a strong focus on two cross-cutting issues: the intersection between class, gender and spatial inequality in explaining labour market segmentation; and methodological innovation through the iterative combination of a purposively designed panel data set with qualitative data so as to maximize the value-added by each method.

The overall aim of the project is to carry out detailed empirical research into the gender dynamics of the labour market in Bangladesh as an example of such a context. South Asia generally reports some of the lowest female labour force participation rates in the world, despite positive though varying rates of economic growth in recent decades. It is also a region where many of the human dimensions of poverty, particularly their gender dimensions, are much lower than warranted by prevailing growth rates (Mehrotra, 2006). Bangladesh represents a promising context in which to explore these puzzling outcomes because it combines a modest but steady rate of growth, remarkable progress on certain aspects of gender equality but a slow pace of change on women’s participation in paid work. While our research will be confined to Bangladesh, our attention to variations in the wider context, including variations in local policy regimes, suggests our findings will provide policy lessons relevant elsewhere in South Asia. The study is led by the London School of Economics (LSE) .Taking into account the constraints on women's labour market, the project will elaborate short-term and long-term policy recommendations.

This research uses quantitative survey data and qualitative data in order to carry out detailed empirical investigation into the interaction between individual choice and structural constraint, including cultural norms and values, which shape labour market outcomes in Bangladesh.  In two phase of the project data have collected from eight different districts of Bangladesh. In qualitative part have done key informant interviews, in two phase total sixteenth Focus group discussions with men and women, forty case studies with men in second phase and eighty case studies with women in first phase who are again interviewed in second phase. In quantittative part survey data are collected from five thousand one hundred and ninety eight female and two thousand six hundred and nineteen male respondents of eight districts in Bangladesh.