Measuring Women's Empowerment: A Latent Class Approach
Nobuko Mizoguchi, University of Colorado, Boulder
Abdur Razzaque, ICDDR,B
The Third Millennium Development Goals (MDG3) calls attention to the need to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment. Gender equality and women's empowerment are also likely to play a big role in the post-2015 development agenda. Monitoring progress toward women’s empowerment is challenging because it is a latent construct. Separately considering observable measures that point to women’s empowerment may miss patterns that arise from an integrated approach. Similarly, simplifying women’s empowerment to a dichotomous variable or using a linear concept of empowerment may overlook the complexity of the interactions between the various dimensions of empowerment. This paper aims to address these concerns by examining patterns of women’s empowerment using a latent class analysis approach. We use data from Matlab, Bangladesh. Results show three classes of women’s empowerment, which vary by age, household head status, and husband’s migration.