GIRI Spring 2024: Gender and Development


What do we mean by “development” and “gender”? What are the barriers and challenges to gender equality in development? What indicators can be used to measure and track gender inequality in economic and social development?

In Spring 2024, the Global Inequality Research Initiative (GIRI) focuses on “Gender and Development”. In this course, we are going to examine how gender influences and is influenced by social and economic development processes.

The course will begin by providing an overview of gender inequalities in various aspects of social and economic life around the world. This will include an exploration of the disparities that exist in areas such as education, healthcare, and work. Following this, students will explore the concept of development with a specific emphasis on how gender is incorporated into the development discourse. We will also study diverse approaches to gender and development and their evolution over time.

The course will then explore in detail the following questions:

  • What is the intra-household division of labor and how does it impact gender equality in the household and beyond?
  • What is the relationship between long-term development and women’s share of the labor force?
  • What are some of the key gender differences in labor markets and paid employment, such as differences in pay, hours worked, and types of jobs held by men and women?
  • What are the gender-differentiated impacts of various phenomena such as globalization, macroeconomic policies, and Covid-19 pandemic?
  • What are the gender dimensions of poverty, migration and climate change?
  • What do intersectional analyses reveal about disadvantages experienced by people when multiple categories of social identity interact with each other?
GIRI spring 2024 decorative banner

GIRI Program Description

The Global Inequality Research Initiative (GIRI) seminar is an interdisciplinary, vertically integrated research course that emphasizes a judicious application of mixed methods from the social sciences and humanities, including quantitative, qualitative, and archival research.

Cross-listed in multiple departments, GIRI facilitates integrated study and research across fields of social, historical, and political inequality. The course, typically offered once each semester, invites students to produce a major paper that will qualify for submission to a refereed journal in the area relevant to the focus of the study. Past GIRI seminar themes have included reparations, genetics and neuroscience, racism in Europe, and social determinants of health.

Program Goals

  • The goal of the class is to navigate the students through a rigorous process that introduces them to the research process. This includes some exposure to qualitative and quantitative methodology.  It introduces students to data gathering, cleaning, analysis, and presentation.  When students complete the course, they should have a better understanding of inequalities and its connection to the course’s topic.  An advanced undergraduate student or graduate student should gain value from this course.
  • In all Global Inequality Research Institute courses, the goal is to immerse students in open-ended research, only with the guidelines of exploring a component of the semester’s theme.
  • Students should not only be able to conduct research, but also share it. GIRI courses always conclude with a capstone conference, where students present their research in a poster or presentation format. The final component of sharing is the goal of having the research paper published in a Social Science journal.