Life Course Transitions and Female Labor Force Outcomes in Egypt

Maia Sieverding, University of California, Berkeley

Scholars have argued that strong life course effects contribute to the very low rate of labor force participation among women in the Middle East. Cross-sectional studies have indicated that women drop out of the labor force around the age that they marry and form families. In this paper, I use a different, longitudinal approach to examine how the transition to marriage is associated with labor force outcomes among young women in Egypt. By restricting the analysis to women who were unmarried in 1998, I am able to reduce cohort variation and analyze the transition to marriage without relying on a cross-sectional comparison of women at different points in their life course. I then use a nonparametric matching estimator to compare labor force outcomes between women who were married by 2006 and those who remained unmarried at that time.

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Presented in Poster Session 3