Gender Influences in the Labour Market: The Case of BRICS

Pinky Lalthapersad-Pillay

Abstract


The aim of the article is to determine how women workers in the five BRICS countries fare with regard to key labour market indicators so as to gain an insight into the gender segregation of employment sectorally, industrially and firm-wise. Such indicators provide a measure of the extent of gender equality in these labour markets. The methodology entailed an analysis of published data from two different sources, namely, World Development Indicators and data from the World Economic Forum. The study showed that although the labour market outcomes for women workers are varied across the BRICS countries, there are some similarities. The majority of BRICS countries conform to the gender segregation of employment as depicted by a marked presence of women workers in services, a negligible proportion in industry and the majority of countries having just above 40% of women employed in the non-agricultural sector. India has a skewed proportion of women workers in agriculture, in self-employment, in vulnerable employment and in the informal sector. The proportion of female employers was generally low for all countries as well as their ability to accede to positions of leadership. Russia fared well with regard to the female participation in firm ownership but South Africa had the highest levels of both female unemployment and female youth unemployment. In terms of the gender gap between males and females in terms of economic participation and opportunity, Russia is closest to equality and is the most highly ranked (42 of 136 countries).

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2014.v5n10p146


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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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