Title

Studying the relationship between women and the environment in developing countries

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Fall 11-1-2022

Abstract

Purpose

– The purpose of this study is to examine whether there is a unidirectional or a bidirectional relationship between women and the environment, and to further study the effect of women on environmental quality.

Design/methodology/approach

– To achieve this purpose, a Granger causality test and a random effects panel data model are used to study women–environment relationship in developing countries. Error correction model (ECM) is the chosen estimation technique. A Granger causality test is used because of its frequent use in examining the existence of a unidirectional or a bidirectional relationship between two or more variables. A random effects panel data model is used as it has proven to be more efficient than the fixed effects panel data model.

Findings

– Women Granger-cause environmental quality while the opposite is not true in developing countries in the long run. This indicates the existence of a unidirectional relationship between women and the environment when the long-run relationship is considered. However, when considering the long- and short run relationship together, the results indicate the presence of a bidirectional relationship. The empirical results of the random effects panel data model through ECM estimation indicate the positive effect of women on improving environmental quality as illustrated by the coefficient of the current change of women. This shows that women are concerned about environmental degradation. In addition, the empirical results highlight the persistence of CO2 emissions. Results also confirm that foreign direct investment inflows lead to further environmental degradation. However, education and trade openness coefficients are found insignificant at the current period.

Research limitations/implications

– The research results have great implications on women empowerment, the reduction of gender bias and the increase in government expenditure on women’s education and health because of women’s positive effect in improving environmental quality.

Originality/value – To the best of the author’s knowledge, this is the first paper that examines the two way relationship between women and the environment and, hence, it fills the gap present in the literature.

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