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Gender inequality and development

ABSTRACT

The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) includes specific targets addressing factors of importance to reduced gender inequality and promotes gender development. The UN Development Programme (UNDP) has reported on gender inequality and gender development indexes based on available data relating to specific SDGs, the indexes being calculated through an elaborate aggregation process. The present study applies the provided UNDP data as basis for a partial order-based approach to gender inequality and development. The data have been applied as indicators without any pretreatment as, e.g., weighting or any aggregation. The focus of the study has been the elucidation of indicator importance, averaged ranking, and disclosure of so-called peculiar countries. The results show that in relation to both reducing inequality and promoting development, the focus should be on education, whereas the financial aspects play a less significant role. The average ranking of the studied countries differs from the linear ordering based on the aggregated indicators applied by the UNDP, although the overall trend can be recognized. A series of the so-called peculiar countries has been disclosed. Thus, for a series of African countries a surprisingly high female-to-male ratio for labor force were found, and a series of Islamic states are all denoted peculiar due to rather low indicator values for the female seats in parliament and female participation in the labor force. Due to the inherent nature of partial ordering incomparabilities between countries prevail. The nature of such incomparabilities has been addressed.