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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - The Pakistan Development Review
Title Consumption patterns of male and female headed households in Pakistan: evidence from PSLM 2007-08
Volume 51
Issue 4
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2012
Page numbers 465-478
URL http://econpapers.repec.org/RePEc:pid:journl:v:51:y:2012:i:4:p:465-478
Recent years have witnessed growing interest in analysing the welfare outcomes of
female headed households (FHHs) in the developing world. The theoretical argument for
examining female headship and family welfare is underpinned by two important
considerations. The first concerns households’ access to resources, while the second
pertains to control over the allocation of resources within the household [DeGraff and
Bilsborrow (1993)]. A priori female headed households are expected to have access to a
lower level of resources than the conventional male-headed households for a variety of
1 However, this lower resource envelop experienced by female headed
households may be partially offset by the way resources are allocated within such
households. Several studies have revealed that resources under the control of women are
more likely to be allocated for productive purposes that promote family welfare as
compared to resource allocation under the control of men. In the context of Pakistan, the
present paper aims to explore how resource allocation within female headed households
differs from male headed households by examining the consumption patterns of both
female and male headed households in the country.
The study will make use of the Engel curve framework, which shows the
relationship between a household’s expenditure on a particular good and total household
income, holding prices constant. The Engel curve framework has been used in a large
strand of empirical literature examining household consumption behaviour, for both the
developed and developing countries, including Pakistan. In case of Pakistan, a large
number of studies have examined household consumption patterns for Pakistan as a
whole and / or by its urban-rural regions.
2 More recently, household consumption
behaviour across the four provinces of the country has also been investigated [Khan and
Khalid (2011)]. To our knowledge, no study has so far examined separately the
consumption behaviour of female and male headed households in Pakistan.

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