ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Information and Communication Technology and Female Labour Market Participation

Does information and communication technology adoption lead to any broad differences in women’s labour force participation behaviour in India? We use the India Human Development Survey to examine employment decisions of women and find that its adoption leads to improvement in employment measures only for urban women.

The female labour force participation rate in India has been recording a precarious drop from 49% in 2004–05 to 37.8% in 2009–10 and further to 35.8% in 2011–12 (NSSO 2011; Andres et al 2017). Several studies in the past have provided evidence of female participation in the labour market in India being primarily distress-driven and influenced by several external factors such as culture, norms, household socio-economic characteristics, and stigma attached to working outside the home (Klasen and Pieters 2012; Abraham 2013; Chakraborty et al 2018; Sarkar et al 2019).

In this article, we explore if information and communication technology (ICT) adoption could increase female labour market participation. The role of ICT adoption on increasing the female labour market participation in the developed country context has been explored in several studies like Nikulin (2017), Watson (2018), and Dettling et al (2018). ICT adoption could directly increase labour market participation through timely availability of important information as well as lower job search efforts and costs for women in India.

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Updated On : 20th Mar, 2023
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