Inderscience Publishers

Economics and gender: issues of environment and valuation

The neoclassical economic approach portends much to the resolution of gender conflict. Within the Pigovian market failure perspective, the focus is on "economic valuation" as a basis of correcting existing prices and establishing the optimum level of economic activity. The thrust of this paper is that the failure of neoclassical application to gender issues is probably irrevocable as a function of the very nature of the theory. Even if the theory could be applied to gender conflicts (and the extent of application is poor), a wide range of theoretical and methodological difficulties suggest that the economic values obtained could be significantly flawed, even in terms of the mainstream theory. Ultimately though, a focus on economic values appears to have fundamental difficulties in dealing with gender issues. An additional theme here is that the neoclassical approach to environment has much in common to the approach on gender, and women in poor countries suffer environmental problems inordinately.

Keywords: alternative economic models, economic valuation, environment, gender, income distribution, market failure, neoclassical economics, public choice, welfare economics, women's work

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