Quarterly Journal of Political Science > Vol 12 > Issue 2

Escape Through Export? Women-Owned Enterprises, Domestic Discrimination, and Global Markets

Iain Osgood, University of Michigan, USA, iosgood@umich.edu Margaret Peters, University of California, Los Angeles, USA, mepeters@ucla.edu
Suggested Citation
Iain Osgood and Margaret Peters (2017), "Escape Through Export? Women-Owned Enterprises, Domestic Discrimination, and Global Markets", Quarterly Journal of Political Science: Vol. 12: No. 2, pp 143-183. http://dx.doi.org/10.1561/100.00015177

Published: 06 Sep 2017
© 2017 I. Osgood and M. Peters
Firm Ownership,  Gender and Ethnicity,  Formal Modelling,  International Political Economy,  Political Economy
Women-owned enterprisesDiscriminationInternational tradeFirm ownershipGender and ethnicityInternational political economy

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Does globalization provide an escape from discriminatory legal and social institutions for women-owned enterprises? We develop an original test of this proposition based on a model of firm heterogeneity with discriminatory costs. Discriminatory institutions raise barriers to entry and increase costs of production, allowing only the most productive women-owned firms to survive. If the costs of discrimination are lower in export markets, the average surviving woman-owned firm is more likely to export and exports a higher proportion of total sales. Using a cross-national data set of firms, we show that while there are significantly fewer women-owned enterprises in countries with discriminatory institutions, these businesses export at higher rates. Global markets therefore provide an important, albeit imperfect, alternative to markets with poor protections of women's rights.


Online Appendix | 100.00015177_app.pdf

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DOI: 10.1561/100.00015177_app

Replication Data | 100.00015177_supp.zip (ZIP).

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DOI: 10.1561/100.00015177_supp