Legal Regimes and Women's Economic Agency (WomEcon)

2016 - 2021 (Completed) Project number: 250753
Research Project
The project's objective is to improve our understanding of how legal regimes and legal changes affect the economic agency of different subgroupes of women across the world

A growing number of studies show that women's economic agency, understood as the ability to make independent economic choices due to access to resources via asset ownership, control of land, or employment, is key to contesting unequal gender relations, refashioning social norms, and creating sustainable development. Yet in much of the developing world the economic agency of women is still constrained by legal provisions that deny them the ability to work, to own land, to inherit, to sign contracts, and to act as autonomous agents in the public sphere. Such provisions restrict the important social mechanism of economic agency that can enable women to contest oppressive gender relations from the ground up. This project is a comparative study of how family laws, labor codes, and public policies differentially shape women's economic agency across the world.  


The Research Council of Norway



Nils Klim Prize awarded to NUPI researcher

March 13, 2018

"An outstanding political scientist and ideally suited as a role model for younger researchers." This is how the jury characterizes this year’s Nils Klim Prize laureate, Francesca R. Jensenius.


The paradox of gender equality

March 7, 2017

‘Development doesn’t necessarily promote equal opportunities’, says Francesca Refsum Jensenius.


Publication : ARTIKKEL

Gender-Discriminatory Laws and Women’s Economic Agency

  • Francesca R. Jensenius
Recent years have seen widespread advances in women’s legal rights in many countries. In other places, restrictions on women’s autonomy remain entrenched. ...

India: A Contradictory Record

  • Francesca R. Jensenius
This chapter provides a review of the role of women in Indian politics, with a focus on female legislators. It begins with an account of the entry of ...
Publication : ARTIKKEL

Comparative Analysis for Theory Development: Reflections on a Study of Women’s Empowerment

  • Francesca R. Jensenius
Methodological texts about comparative work have focused overwhelmingly on controlled comparisons aimed at causal inference. To show the range of possible ...

Project Manager

Francesca R. Jensenius

Former employee

Asia  Development policy  Global economy

My Rafstedt

Former employee


University of New Mexico (Mala Htun)

Mon 13 Jun 2016
Time: 10:30 Europe/Oslo
Location: NUPI

Women in elected politics: variations, barriers, and effects

NUPI is happy to welcome Torild Skard, Mala Htun and Elin Bjarnegård to share insights from their recent research on women in elected politics across the world