Social Institutions and Gender Index

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The Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) is an index designed to measure gender equality in a society. SIGI is a composite indicator of gender equality, introduced by the OECD Development Centre in 2007. It solely focuses on social institutions that impact the roles of men and women, such as a society's norms, values and attitudes that relate to women.[1]

Construction of the Indicator[edit]

SIGI is based on a selection of indicators from the Gender, Institutions and Development (GID) Database. It specifically draws on the GID's social institutions variables that are grouped into five categories or subindices: Family Code, Physical Integrity, Civil Liberties, Son Preference (measured as the incidence of Missing women), and Ownership Rights. The index is an unweighted average of these 5 subindices and measures on a scale from 0 to 1 the level of gender inequality in social institutions (higher levels indicate greater inequality). Each term in the SIGI formula is squared to allow for partial comparison. The indicators that compose the SIGI would yield uniformly hig,h or even perfect scores for OECD member countries, given that legal discrimination against women is not present in most of these countries. However, significant gender inequality may nevertheless exist in OECD member countries; therefore, SIGI scores are only calculated for non-OECD countries to avoid misleading comparisons.[1]

Use of the Indicator[edit]

Econometric analysis using the SIGI have shown the significant impact of social institutions on gender equality outcomes. For example, higher levels of gender inequality in social institutions are strongly correlated to lower participation of women in paid labor.[2] However, higher levels of inequality are not necessarily associated with lower levels of per capita income. Some high-income countries in the Middle East and North Africa region, for example, have high levels of gender inequality. Education, on the other hand, seems to be a strong promoter of women's rights. The higher the percentage of women who can read and write, the lower the discrimination they suffer in social institutions.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Branisa, Boris; Klasen, Stephan; Ziegler, Maria; Drechsler, Denis; Jütting, Johannes. "The Institutional Basis of Gender Inequality: The Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI)". Feminist Economics. 20 (2): 29–64. doi:10.1080/13545701.2013.850523. 
  2. ^ "Discrimination in Social Institutions and Women's Participation in the Labour Force - A Strong Relationship | Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI)". Retrieved 2016-04-21. 
  3. ^ "Social Institutions, Literacy and Growth | Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI)". Retrieved 2016-04-21. 


External links[edit]