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philippines = gender equality

apparently the philippines is one of the most gender equal countries in the world. the U.S. ranks 27th out of 140.


This does not refer to the famous gender gap in earnings but to a study (pdf) which compares men’s and women’s economic, educational, political and health outcomes by building all that into an index. The index measures outcomes (for example, the labor force participation rates of women and men) and not inputs (for example, the presence or absence of paid parental leave). What is interesting about this particular index is that it doesn’t weigh the results by the economic development level of a country. Thus, a poor country can rank high on this index even if it doesn’t offer many opportunities for girls to get educated as long as the opportunities are the same for boys and girls.

top ten:
1. Norway
2. Finland
3. Sweden
4. Iceland
5. New Zealand
6. Philippines
7. Denmark
8. Ireland
9. Netherlands
10. Latvia

so this is sort of weird. what’s the philippines doing w/ all these advanced industrialized countries? (except latvia, which is falling apart, and i guess iceland, too.)

my theory, based on speculation: there aren’t overt social/cultural barriers to women getting an education or jobs, and the sentiment that “women should stay home and cook and take care of the children” isn’t that prevalent. they’ve also had two female presidents, which i think makes a huge difference.

for people with no access to education, there might actually be more opportunities for women in service industries (live-in cooks, housecleaners, and nannies). and if that’s completely not true (totally possible since i don’t believe in “math” or “statistics” or “facts”), then i posit that being dirt poor is pretty good inspiration to get every person, male or female, to work or out of the country to send home some cushy remittances.

and for your own edification, the bottom 10
1. Bahrain
2. Ethiopia
3. Turkey
4. Egypt
5. Morocco
6. Benin
7. Pakistan
8. Saudi Arabia
9. Chad
10. Yemen

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