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Au Yong Lyn, Audrey (2020): Male employment and female intra-household decision-making: a Mexican gold mining case study. In: Review of economics of the household: pp. 1-39 [PDF, 1MB]


This study explores the effect of economic booms in male-dominated industries like mining on female intra-household decision-making power. Using the 2007-2008 global financial crisis as an exogenous event which led to a gold mining boom in Mexico, I find that women living in gold endowed municipalities experienced higher decision-making power contrary to some theoretical predictions. These results appear to be consistent with unitary household bargaining models which assume income pooling, as female decision-making power increased despite no changes in female labor force participation and an observed increase in male employment. Findings from a separate survey additionally show that while women residing in gold endowed states had higher decision-making power, they were also more likely to suffer from intimate partner violence (IPV). This suggests that a woman's intra-household decision-making authority is not necessarily negatively correlated with her risk of IPV as posited in feminist theory.

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