In South Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, men provide for their families while women are supposed to stay away from unrelated men. Chinese and Russian women work, but remain governed by men. Latin America has undergone radical transformation, staging massive rallies against male violence and nearly achieving gender parity in political representation. Scandinavia still comes closest to a feminist utopia, but for most of history Europe was far more patriarchal than matrilineal South East Asia and Southern Africa.

What explains “The Great Gender Divergence”?

My name is Alice Evans. I’m studying how the world has become more gender equal, and why some societies are more gender equal than others. My book is forthcoming with Princeton University Press.

I also have a podcast, “Rocking Our Priors

Forthcoming and published papers

‘South Asia’s Honour-Income Trade-Off', forthcoming in the World Bank’s World Development Report

‘How did East Asia overtake South Asia on Gender?’, forthcoming, for the Asian Development Bank

Export Incentives, Domestic Mobilisation, and Labour Reforms’, Review of International Political Economy, 28(5): 1332-1361.

The Politics of Pro-Worker Reforms’, Socio-Economic Review, 18(4):1089-1111.

‘Rocking Our Priors’, PS: Political Science & Politics (special issue on Podcasts), 2020, 53(2): 320-322.

Overcoming the Global Despondency Trap: Strengthening Corporate Accountability in Supply Chains’, Review of International Political Economy, 2020. 27(3):658-685.

How Cities Erode Gender Inequalities: A New Theory and Evidence from Cambodia’, Gender & Society, 2019, 33(6): 961-984.

Reputations count: why benchmarking performance is improving health care across the world’ (with Gwyn Bevan and Sabina Nuti), Health Economics, Policy and Law, 2019. 14(2): 141-161.

Politicising Inequality: The Power of Ideas’, World Development, 2018. 110: 360-372.

Cities as Catalysts of Gendered Social Change? Reflections from Zambia’, Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 2018. 108(4): 1096-111.

Amplifying Accountability by Benchmarking Results at District and National Levels’, Development Policy Review, 2018. 36(2): 221-240.

Patriarchal Unions = Weaker Unions? Industrial Relations in the Asian Garment Industry’, Third World Quarterly, 2018. 38(7): 1619-1638.

The Decline of the Male Breadwinner and Persistence of the Female Carer: exposure, interests and micro-macro interactions’, Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 2016. 106(5): 1135-1151.

“For the Elections We Want Women!”: Closing the gender gap in Zambian politics’, Development and Change 47:2, 388-411.

Gender Sensitisation in the Zambian Copperbelt’, Geoforum, 2015. 59: 12-20.

History Lessons for Gender Equality from the Zambian Copperbelt, 1900-1990’, Gender, Place and Culture, 2015. 22(3): 344-362.

“Women Can Do What Men Can Do”: The causes and consequences of flexibility in gender divisions of labour in Kitwe, Zambia’, Journal of Southern African Studies, 2014. 40(5): 991-998.

Co-education and the Erosion of Gender Stereotypes in the Zambian Copperbelt’, Gender & Development, 2014. 22:1, 75-90.

World Development Report 2012: Radical redistribution or just tinkering within the template?’, Development, 2012. 55(1): 134-137.

Looking for the One(s): Young love and urban poverty in The Gambia’ (with Sylvia Chant), Environment and Urbanization, 2010. 22(2): 353-369.

Sexuality, Poverty and Gender amongst Gambian Youth’ for Sylvia Chant (ed.) The International Handbook of Gender and Poverty (Cheltenham: Edward Elgar). 2010.

Me in Rabat (Morocco), 2023





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Why has the world become more gender equal? Why are some societies more gender equal than others?

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Dr Alice Evans is a Visiting Fellow at Stanford, writing “The Great Gender Divergence" (forthcoming with Princeton University Press).