Gender and Public Social Spending: Disaggregating Benefit Incidence


Demery, Lionel. 1996. "Gender and Public Social Spending: Disaggregating Benefit Incidence." Poverty and Social Policy Department Discussion Paper, Washington DC: World Bank.

Author: Lionel Demery


This note describes how the gender dimension of public spending on health and education can be captured in part through benefit incidence analysis. It contains two basic messages. First, gender disaggregations are important in their own right, since they highlight gender differences in benefit incidence which are of policy concern. Second, these gender differences are also important in understanding other matters of policy concern. The example taken here is poverty, or more specifically, the targeting of government spending to the poor. The paper begins, in section II, with a brief review of the benefit incidence approach and establishes how gender disaggregations can be readily incorporated in the methodology. Illustrations are then provided (in section III) from estimates of benefit incidence of social spending in Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana. But the benefit incidence of government spending is only part of the story. In order to gain access to government-funded services, households generally have to incur out-of-pocket expenditures. These may also be subject to gender differences. Section IV considers these using household survey data in Ghana. Section V makes some concluding observations.

Topics: Economies, Poverty, Education, Gender, Gender Budgeting, Health Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Côte D'Ivoire, Ghana

Year: 1996

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