Impact of Socio-Economic and Demographic Factors on Women Decision Making while making the household Purchasing - Evidence from Pakistan
Keywords:Socio-Economic, Demographic Factors, Women Decision Making, Consumer behavior, Pakistan
This research aims to identify the critical socio-economic and demographic factors influencing women's decision-making power within households. Utilizing data from the Pakistan Demographic and Health Survey (PDHS) 2017-2018, the study focuses on currently married women aged 15-49 years (n = 11,831). The investigation examines four categories of decision-making by women at the household level: own healthcare, major household purchases, utilization of husband's income, and visits to family or relatives. Various socio-economic and demographic variables are analyzed to assess their impact on the four decision-making types. The findings reveal that women's age, employment status, education, place of residence, and number of living children significantly influence their decision-making capacity. Notably, women residing in rural areas demonstrate lower decision-making power across all four domains, highlighting the necessity for targeted empowerment programs to enhance their roles in household decision-making. Moreover, women's education is found to have a positive correlation with decision-making in all four categories (p < 0.01), underscoring its pivotal role in empowering women within the household context. Arguably, the study uncovers that wealthier women have a lower likelihood of holding decision-making power compared to those living in poorer or middle-class households. Addressing this discrepancy necessitates a comprehensive government-level strategy to enhance women's socio-economic status, thereby fostering their authority in household decision-making.