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Latent Women's Empowerment

The Latent Women's Empowerment Measure is an 18-item measure designed to assess women's empowerment using data from the Self Help Group Impact Assessment Survey (SIAS) in 5 states in India. The construct of women's empowerment is derived from 5 latent constructs (i.e., economic, autonomy, network communication and political, social attitudes, and education) using a structural equation modelling framework. These are measured using items that cover aspects such as: decision-making capacity, financial literacy, political involvement, reaction or resistance to abuse, and self-confidence.

Categories

Geographies Tested: India

Populations Included: Female

Age Range: Adults

Items:

Construct: Economic
Primary activity
1. Primary activity of the respondent in 2003

Response Options:
Didn't work - 1
Farm activity - 2
Self-employment in non-farm activity - 3
Agricultural wage laborer - 4
Non-farm employment - 5
Others - 6
No response - 7

Investment to improve home
2. Has the respondent made any repairs, improvements or additions in their home that cost more than Rs 5000?

Response Options:
Yes - 1
No - 2
Don't know - 3

Confidence to meet financial crisis
3. Are you more confident of meeting financial crisis in the family after joining the group?

Arranging credit and other input
4. Are you able to arrange the credit and other inputs in time?

Response Options:
Yes - 1
No - 0

Construct: Autonomy
Purchase of raw material
5. Do you take crucial decisions in purchase of raw materials, pricing of the product of your activity?

Plan work
6. Do you plan you (work related) activities and get things done by others?

Response Options:
Yes - 1
No - 0

Reaction to emotional abuse
7. What would you do in the following situation in your family- psychological and emotional abuse?

Response Options:
Submit yourself - 1
Do nothing - 2
Resist - 3
Give warning - 4
Complain to relatives - 5
Lodge complaint with SHG or take their help - 6

Construct: Network, Communication, and Political Participation
Officials you have met
8. How many officials (from bank, government and so forth) have you met and spoken to?

Response Options:
Numeric average (mean) and standard deviation

Communication
9. How does the respondent communicate in the meetings?

Response Options:
Talks freely - 1
Sometimes talks - 2
Hesitates to talk and hence does not talk - 3
Talks if asked - 4

Know about reservation
10. Dodid you know that women have reservations in panchayats and jobs?

Involvement in village politics
11. Dodid you get involved in village level politics?

Response Options:
Yes - 1
No - 2

Verbal abuse
12. What would you do in the following situation in your family - verbal abuse?

Response Options:
Submit yourself - 1
Do nothing - 2
Resist - 3
Give warning - 4
Complain to relatives - 5
Lodge complaint with SHG or take their help - 6

Change in family violence
13. Is there any change in the family violence since July 2000?

Response Options:
Increased - 1
No change - 2
Decreased - 3
Never had any family violence - 4

Construct: Social Attitudes
Treatment by spouse
14. As compared to July 2000 how is the treatment of your spouse towards you?

Response Options:
Less respectful - 1
Usual - 2
More respectful - 3

Reaction to physical abuse
15. What would you do in the following situation in your family – beatingphysical violence?

Response Options:
Submit yourself - 1
Do nothing - 2
Resist - 3
Give warning - 4
Complain to relatives - 5
Lodge complaint with SHG or take their help - 6

Increase in self confidence

16. As compared to July 2000, has your involvement in all decisions of the family increased?

Response Options:
Yes - 1
No - 2

17. As compared to July 2000, has yourself confidence:

Response Options:
Increased - 1
Decreased - 2
Same as before - 3

Construct: Education
Education level

18. Education level in 2003

Response Options:
Cannot read or write - 1
No schooling but can sign my name - 2
No schooling but can read a letter - 3
No schooling but can read and write a letter - 4
Primary - 5
Secondary - 6
College - 7

Scoring Procedures

Items combined using structural equation modeling (SEM). Cross-loadings exist for verbal abuse, change in family violence, and emotional abuse items. Additional measurement model details are found within the original article.

Original Citation

Swain, B.R., & Wallentin, F.Y. (2017). The Impact of Microfinance on Factors Empowering Women: Differenes in Regional and Delivery Mechanisms in India's SHG Programme. The Journal of Development Studies, 53(5), 684-699. https://doi.org/10.1080/00220388.2016.1205732

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