The Impact of Partner Migration on Female Labor Force Participation in a New Sending Region in Mexico

Kristen Jeffers, University of Minnesota

This paper will investigate the household structure of women with migrant partners and evaluate the impact of partner absenteeism on female labor force participation in rural areas of southeastern Mexico. Studies that measure the effect of remittances on recipient labor force participation fail to consider cultural norms that discourage female participation in the formal labor force. I suggest that migration-based changes in household structure give women in the new sending region of southeastern Mexico an opportunity to challenge the cultural norms that govern their intrahousehold bargaining position. Using IPUMS-International data from the 2010 Mexican census, I will perform propensity score matching to examine differences in labor force participation between women with migrant partners and women who are likely to have migrant partners but do not.

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 Presented in Session P6. Migration and Urbanization/Population, Development, and the Environment