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Which countries have laws preventing violence? Which have laws requiring married women to obey their husbands? Which legislate for gender equality? Which allow abortion? Which require that women be given time off during the work day to nurse their infants? Which punish dismissal of pregnant women?

There are a great many stylized facts (oftentimes myths) about how women are doing and how far we have come in the formal acquisition and assertion of our fundamental rights. I have been fortunate to find many outlets for my legal training during my study and practice of economics, and I have discovered to my utmost delight that both of these exceedingly individualistic fields intersect, and in no small measure I might add.

Questions about economic growth, productivity and the alleviation of rural poverty among African farmers and across all occupational groups and sectors for that matter, can hadly be addressed without an examination of issues surrounding land rights, property law, contract enforcement, labor law, family law…and the list goes on and on and on.

Furthermore, I am quite certain that it is impossible to fully understand and provide effective solutions to development issues without a clear study of the problems in the context of gender, because whether anyone likes it or not, regardless of if we are in rural Uganda or the in the mountains of Ethiopia, the solutions for men will in most cases be an entirely useless tool for addressing the very same problems among women.

We were supposed to move on to the next topic in our current series but I am sure no one here would mind if we take a small detour, and gorge ourselves on this amazing interactive map from The Guardian. Using World Bank and UN data to create “a snapshot of women’s rights across the globe, they composed a tool with which you can select a region and hover over a country to see how it has legislated for violence, harassment, abortion, property and employment rights, discrimination and equality. Click on a country to tweet a message on the figures. Country data can be viewed in relation to its population size and those of its neighboring states. Click the centre of the circle to return to the beginning.”

Women's Rights By Country - Graphic Representation Courtesy of The Guardian

Women’s Rights By Country – Graphic Representation Courtesy of The Guardian (click here or on the image to get to the map)

Enjoy! I know I did 🙂

Next Up: “Good Neighbors…Good Friends”

Source: The Guardian.