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Missing Girls in the South Caucasus: Exploring Policy Options
April 27, 2015World Bank Headquarters, Washington, DC, Room J1-050

The issue of “missing girls” was recently identified in certain parts of Europe and Central Asia, particularly in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. This seminar will look at the latest research and focus on policy lessons from the international experience.

The issue of “missing girls”, manifesting in birth ratios strongly skewed in favor of boys, has received significant attention at the global level in the last few decades, particularly in Asian countries. It is associated with son preference and exacerbated by declining fertility and increased availability of sex-determining technologies in utero. The 2012 World Development Report (WDR) on Gender Equality and Development noted that 3.9 million women under 60 years of age are deemed “missing” each year. Unborn girls account for about 40 percent of these.

The phenomenon of “missing girls” was relatively recently identified in demographic trends in certain parts of Europe and Central Asia, particularly in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. Evidence for these countries remained scarce. This seminar will look at the latest research on “missing girls” in the South Caucasus to establish the severity and underlying causes of this phenomenon in these countries. A focus will be put on discussing policy lessons from international experience and recent research on gender equality and behavior – particularly the World Bank Development Reports on Gender Equality and Development and Mind, Society and Behavior - to inform the ongoing debate on policy options in the South Caucasus.

Other dissemination events are being organized in each of the 3 countries:

Session I: Presentation of Main Findings 
10:00 - 11:00 am 

Introductory Remarks and Chair: Carolina Sánchez- Páramo, Practice Manager, Poverty Global Practice 

Exploring the Phenomenon of ‘Missing Women’ in the South Caucasus: An Overview of Main Findings
María E. Dávalos, Senior Economist, Poverty Global Practice

Regional Trends and International Policy Lessons for the South Caucasus Countries 
Monica Das Gupta, Senior Demographer

Missing Women in the South Caucasus: Identifying Underlying Drivers Using Qualitative Surveys
Nora Dudwick, Senior Anthropologist


Session II: Panel - Reflections on Policy Options
11:10 am - 12:30 pm

Chair: Ana Revenga, Senior Director, Poverty Global Practice

Laura Bailey, Country Manager for Armenia

Varun Gauri, Co-Director of World Development Report 2015: Mind, Society and Behavior  

Sudhir Shetty, Co-Director of World Development Report 2012: Gender Equality and Development, Chief Economist, East Asia and Pacific Region 

 

Event Details and RSVP
  • Location: World Bank Group J Building, 701 18th Street NW, Washington, DC
  • Room: J1-050