Determining the Extent of Gender Discrimination in Educational Attainment: A Case of Pakistan
Keywords:Education, Gender Discrimination, Pakistan
Gender bias in developing countries may restrict educational opportunities for girls in comparison to boys. This paper attempts to measure the gender disparity in education amongst children from 5 years to 18 years of age across Pakistan. Using the Cross-sectional data from PSLM and applying Oaxaca decomposition with probit estimation we measure the gender gap through explained and unexplained variation on three aspects of education; first, the overall school enrollments across Pakistan, second the differences in the school enrollments based upon the type of school i.e. public vs. private schools for the three levels of education: primary, middle/secondary and higher secondary. Third, we determine whether gender discrimination exists in the accumulated schooling decision for the age group of 18 to 30 years. The results interestingly show that although a strong bias exists against females in overall enrollment rates, but as we explore further we see that males drop out of private schools more as compared to females and the accumulated level of schooling of the male adults is also lower than that of females. We find that much of these differences are not due to the endowment effects. Large negative deviation for males may be attributed to the unobservable pressure and society’s norms regarding the role of males that affect them in an adverse manner.
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