A reversal of educational fortune? Educational gender gaps in Bangladesh


  • M. Najeeb Shafiq

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    1. Indiana University, Bloomington, USA
    • Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, Indiana University, 201 N. Rose Avenue, Bloomington, IN 47405, USA.
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    • Assistant Professor of Education Policy Studies, Indiana University.


Historically, educational gender gaps in Bangladesh persisted as households invested more in the education of boys than girls. Recent anecdotal and descriptive reports, however, claim that Bangladesh has achieved gender parity in education. Using advanced empirical methods and nationally representative data, this study finds that urban and rural boys (relative to urban and rural girls) have a 7.4–27.4% lower likelihood of being enrolled in school, 0.4–1.5 fewer years of educational attainment and 9.7–30.8% lower likelihood of being literate. These findings draw attention to the causes of the reversal in the educational gender gap in Bangladesh. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.