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Informal Economies

Gender, Domestic Energy and Design of Inclusive Low-Income Habitats: A Case of Slum Rehabilitation Housing in Mumbai, India

Citation:

Sunikka-Blank, Minna, Ronita Bardhan, and Anika Nasra Haque. 2019. “Gender, Domestic Energy and Design of Inclusive Low-Income Habitats: A Case of Slum Rehabilitation Housing in Mumbai, India.” Energy Research & Social Science 49 (March): 53–67.

Authors: Minna Sunikka-Blank, Ronita Bardhan, Anika Nasra Haque

Abstract:

Women's involvement in decision-making in domestic energy remains an under-researched area, especially in the urban context. This research adopts a gendered perspective in exploring slum rehabilitation housing in India. Based on a household survey and a focus group discussion (FGD), women’s household and working practices are explored in interview narratives and systems analysis. The findings show that the relocation to slum re- habilitation housing (SRH) has radically changed women’s household routines (cooking, comfort, childrearing, working and entertainment practices) and that women are more affected by the relocation than men. Changed practices, poor design of SRH and lack of outdoor space have radically increased electricity use and living costs in all the surveyed households. The economic pressure forces women into lowly paid jobs or informal economy, creating a vicious circle where women’s time poverty further reduces their social capital and opportunities for self-development in terms of education or formal employment. A comparison of SRH typologies shows that building design has great influence both on gendered use of space and electricity use, advocating a courtyard typology. Further, interviews with policy-makers reveal a dis-juncture between the occupant realities and the policy objectives. The paper argues that gender equality can and should be influenced through energy and housing policies and offers a conceptual framework for inclusive SRH to address this dis-juncture.

Keywords: gender, domestic energy use, inequality, design, slum rehabilitation housing

Topics: Economies, Informal Economies, Education, Gender, Gender Analysis, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Households, Infrastructure, Energy Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2019

Gender and the Formal and Informal Systems of Local Public Finance in Sierra Leone

Citation:

van den Boogaard, Vanessa. 2018. “Gender and the Formal and Informal Systems of Local Public Finance in Sierra Leone.” Working Paper No. 87, International Centre for Tax and Development (ICTD), Brighton. 

Author: Vanessa van den Boogaard

Abstract:

This paper considers how men and women in eastern and northern Sierra Leone interact differently with formal and informal revenue collection. It argues that the literature on tax and gender equity needs to be expanded in low-income countries to pay greater attention to the ways that citizens pay for public services in practice. It shows that formal taxation affects a very small proportion of the population, and especially of the female population. The reality is that women primarily pay for services at the local level through informal revenue contributions, which has the potential to reinforce gender inequities on account of the implications for intra-household divisions of power and lack of associated opportunities for political representation.

Keywords: gender, informal systems, local public finance, Sierra Leone

Topics: Economies, Informal Economies, Public Finance, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equity, Households, Political Participation Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Sierra Leone

Year: 2018

Toilet Not Taxes: Gender Inequity in Dar es Salaam’s City Markets

Citation:

Siebert, Marius and Anna Mbise. 2018. “Toilet Not Taxes: Gender Inequity in Dar es Salaam’s City Markets.” ICTD Working Paper 89, ICTD (The International Center for Tax and Development), Brighton. 

Authors: Marius Siebert, Anna Mbise

Abstract:

In this paper we examine market taxation in Dar es Salaam from a gender perspective. We do not find any evidence of gender bias in the way market traders are taxed, but we do find a major gender issue that we did not expect – toilet fees. Female traders pay up to 18 times more for their daily use of the market toilets than they pay as market tax. High toilet fees have a differential and adverse impact on women, who require toilets more frequently than men, and have fewer alternatives. This shows that a focus on formal taxation systems does not reveal all complex linkages between gender and taxation in the informal sector of developing countries. A gender-aware perspective on market taxation requires us to look wholistically at gender-differentiated patterns of use and funding of collective goods and services. 

 

Keywords: tax, gender, toilets, informal sector, service provision, hygiene, local authorities, tanzania, Dar es Salaam, gender and tax, informal taxation, market traders

Topics: Economies, Informal Economies, Public Finance, Gender Regions: Africa, East Africa Countries: Tanzania

Year: 2018

Expensive to Be a Female Trader: The Reality of Taxation of Flea Market Traders in Zimbabwe

Citation:

Ligomeka, Waziona. 2019. “Expensive to Be a Female Trader: The Reality of Taxation of Flea Market Traders in Zimbabwe.” Working Paper No. 93, ICTD (International Centre for Tax and Development), Brighton.

Author: Waziona Ligomeka

Abstract:

Interest is growing in taxing small-scale traders in developing countries in both the academic literature and the policy arena. This interest is due to the large and often growing portion of small-scale businesses in many developing economies, which is eroding their formal tax bases. Zimbabwe is slowly, but increasingly taxing this sector. In 2005 the country introduced a simplified tax regime targeting small-scale businesses, requiring them to pay a presumptive tax instead of the standard corporate tax. Initially, only a limited number of business types were subject to the presumptive tax. However, in 2011 additional small-scale business types were included in the regime. The interest to tax the small-scale sector emanates from the gradual but significant increase in the number of small-scale traders and the reduction in formal tax revenue as a result of a decline in economic activities. As a percentage of its total economy, Zimbabwe has the second largest informal sector in the world, with 60.6% of its economy engaged in small-scale business. However, as the drive to tax more small-scale businesses is increasing in Zimbabwe, the reality of taxing this sector is unclear. Accordingly, this study aims to answer the following questions: 1. What kind of taxes do flea market traders pay in Zimbabwe? 2. What proportion of a flea market trader’s income is paid in taxes? 3. Is there gender disparity in the taxation of flea market traders?

Keywords: gender, market, tax, tax burden, Zimbabwe

Topics: Economies, Informal Economies, Public Finance, Gender Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Zimbabwe

Year: 2019

Domestic Environmental Labour: An Ecofeminist Perspective on Making Homes Greener

Citation:

Farbotko, Carol. 2018. Domestic Environmental Labour: An Ecofeminist Perspective on Making Homes Greener. New York: Routledge.

Author: Carol Farbotko

Annotation:

Summary:
This book addresses the question of domestic environmental labour from an ecofeminist perspective. A work of cultural geography, it explores the proposition that the practice and politics of domestic labour being undertaken in the name of ‘the environment’ needs to be better recognized, understood and accounted for as a phenomenon shaped by, and shaping of, gender, class and spatial relations.
 
The book argues that a significant yet neglected phenomenon worthy of research attention is the upsurge in voluntary, and yet mostly unrecognized, domestic environmental labour in high-consuming households in late modernity, with the burden often falling on women seeking to green their lives and homes in aid of a sustainable planet. Further, because domestic environmental labour is undervalued in governance and the formal economy, much like other types of domestic labour, householders have become an unrecognized and unaccounted-for supply of labour for the greening of capitalism.
 
Situated within broad global debates on links between ecological and social change, the book has relevance in the many jurisdictions around the world in which households are positioned as sites of environmental protection through green consumption. The volume engages existing interest in household environmental behaviour and practice, advancing understanding of these topics in new ways. (Summary from Routledge)
 
Table of Contents: 
1. Introduction
 
2. The Green Home Imperative
 
3. Privatising Greening and The Work of Green Technology
 
4. Reclaiming Domestic Environmental Labour: Alternative Domestic Green Politics
 
5. Conclusion: Nature, Work, Home

Topics: Economies, Ecological Economics, Informal Economies, Environment, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Gender, Households, Livelihoods

Year: 2018

Women Smuggling and the Men who Help Them: Gender, Corruption and Illicit Networks in Senegal

Citation:

Howson, Cynthia. 2012. “Women Smuggling and the Men who Help Them: Gender, Corruption and Illicit Networks in Senegal.” Journal of Modern African Studies 50 (3): 421-45.

Author: Cynthia Howson

Abstract:

This paper investigates gendered patterns of corruption and access to illicit networks among female cross-border traders near the Senegambian border. Despite a discourse of generosity and solidarity, access to corrupt networks is mediated by class and gender, furthering social differentiation, especially insofar as it depends on geographic and socio-economic affinity with customs officers, state representatives and well-connected transporters. Issues of organisational culture, occupational identity and interpersonal negotiations of power represent important sources of corruption that require an understanding of the actual dynamics of public administration. While smuggling depends on contesting legal and social boundaries, the most successful traders (and transporters) strive to fulfil ideal gender roles as closely as possible. Ironically, trading on poverty and feminine vulnerability only works for relatively affluent women.

Topics: Corruption, Economies, Informal Economies, Poverty, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Femininity/ies, Trafficking, Human Trafficking Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Senegal

Year: 2012

Gendering Insecurities, Informalization and "War Economies"

Citation:

Peterson, V. Spike. 2016. “Gendering Insecurities, Informalization and ‘War Economies.’” In The Palgrave Handbook of Gender and Development, edited by W. Harcourt, 441-62. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Author: V. Spike Peterson

Abstract:

David Roberts (2008) observes that defining human security is more contentious than defining human insecurity (also Burke 2007). Like many others, Roberts draws on diverse literatures referencing institutional, indirect, or structural violence to generate a definition of insecurity as “avoidable civilian deaths, occurring globally, caused by social, political and economic institutions and structures, built and operated by humans and which could feasibly be changed” (2008, 28). Indirect or structural violence refers to the presumably unintended but recurring patterns of suffering or harm that result from the way social institutions or structures “order” expectations, norms, and practices.1 “War” is arguably a display of structural violence at its extremity. Feminists have produced incisive accounts of how in/security, violence, conflicts, and wars are pervasively gendered.2 But existing analyses tend to focus on masculinist identities and ideologies in the context of embodied and “political” forms of violence, leaving aside how these are inextricably linked to economic phenomena.

Keywords: informal economy, informal activity, human security, international relations, social reproduction

Topics: Conflict, Economies, Informal Economies, War Economies, Feminisms, Gendered Power Relations, Masculinism, Security, Human Security, Violence

Year: 2016

Feminist Ecological Economics and Sustainability

Citation:

Perkins, Patricia E. 2007. "Feminist Ecological Economics and Sustainability." Journal of Bioeconomics 9 (3): 227-44. 

Author: Patricia E. Perkins

Keywords: feminist economics, ecological economics, sustainable development, unpaid work, economic valuation, caring labor, material throughput, economic growth, gender equity, social reproduction, local economies, social change, sustaining services, social sustainability, feminism, provisioning, sustainable livelihoods, service sector, quality of life, work time, multi-tasking, discourse-based valuation, community economies, social resilience

Annotation:

Summary:
New developments in feminist ecological economics and ecofeminist economics are contributing to the search for theories and policy approaches to move economies toward sustainability. This paper summarizes work by ecofeminists and feminist ecological economists which is relevant to the sustainability challenge and its implications for the discipline of economics. Both democracy and lower material throughputs are generally seen as basic principles of economic sustainability. Feminist theorists and feminist ecological economists offer many important insights into the conundrum of how to make a democratic and equity-enhancing transition to an economy based on less material throughput. These flow from feminist research on unpaid work and caring labor, provisioning, development, valuation, social reproduction, non-monetized exchange relationships, local economies, redistribution, citizenship, equity-enhancing political institutions, and labor time, as well as creative modeling approaches and activism-based theorizing. (Summary from original source)

Topics: Citizenship, Democracy / Democratization, Economies, Ecological Economics, Informal Economies, Environment, Feminisms, Ecofeminism

Year: 2007

Toward a Sustaining Production Theory

Citation:

O’Hara, Sabine U. 1997. “Toward a Sustaining Production Theory.” Ecological Economics 20 (2): 141–54.

Author: Sabine O’Hara

Abstract:

Production is commonly described as the root of wealth creation, growth and progress. Mainline production theory ascribes this wealth generating ability to a limited number of inputs transformed into equally narrowly defined goods and services. Output which is not part of the official economy's market exchange, or inputs not employed in their production process remain external and unaccounted for. Many of these unaccounted for goods and inputs are provided in households, gardens, subsistence production, or ecological and biophysical systems through the ‘free’ services of women or nature. Thus an alternative view of production is suggested, one which views production itself as linked to the social and bio-physical contexts within which it takes place. This context first makes the generation of input streams, the receiving of output streams and the processing of inputs by means of fund factors (Georgescu-Roegen) possible. As production is contextualized it becomes evident that processes which sustain input generation, waste absorption and material transformation are critical to the production process. These are referred to as sustaining services. A sustaining production process is one which maintains sustaining services instead of destroying them. It is further argued that steps toward the implementation of a sustaining production concept require a move from abstraction to material concreteness. Three areas of concreteness are discussed as moving from solely monetary to physical valuation criteria, moving from methodological homogeneity to diversity, and moving from a mystified and distanced decision making process about quantity and quality of production to one of informed, participatory discourse.

Keywords: production theory, sustainability, ecosystem services, social sustainability, flow/ fund factors, feminist theory

Topics: Economies, Ecological Economics, Informal Economies, Environment, Gender, Women, Gender Roles

Year: 1997

Globalisation Masculinities, Empire Building and Forced Prostitution: A Critical Analysis of the Gendered Impact of the Neoliberal Economic Agenda in Post-Invasion/Occupation Iraq

Citation:

Banwell, Stacy. 2015. “Globalisation Masculinities, Empire Building and Forced Prostitution: A Critical Analysis of the Gendered Impact of the Neoliberal Economic Agenda in Post-Invasion/Occupation Iraq.” Third World Quarterly 36 (4): 705–22.

Author: Stacy Banwell

Abstract:

Adopting a transnational feminist lens and using a political economy approach, this article addresses both the direct and indirect consequences of the 2003 war in Iraq, specifically the impact on civilian women. Pre-war security and gender relations in Iraq will be compared with the situation post-invasion/occupation. The article examines the globalised processes of capitalism, neoliberalism and neo-colonialism and their impact on the political, social and economic infrastructure in Iraq. Particular attention will be paid to illicit and informal economies: coping, combat and criminal. The 2003 Iraq war was fought using masculinities of empire, post-colonialism and neoliberalism. Using the example of forced prostitution, the article will argue that these globalisation masculinities – specifically the privatisation agenda of the West and its illegal economic occupation – have resulted in women either being forced into the illicit (coping) economy as a means of survival, or trafficked for sexual slavery by profit-seeking criminal networks who exploit the informal economy in a post-invasion/occupation Iraq. 

Keywords: globalisation masculinities, post-colonialism, neoliberalism, gender-based violence, transnational feminism, political economy

Topics: Armed Conflict, Occupation, Economies, Informal Economies, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Globalization, Infrastructure, Livelihoods, Sexual livelihoods, Political Economies, Security, Trafficking, Sex Trafficking Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq

Year: 2015

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