Engendering Economic Recovery: Modeling Alternatives to Austerity in Europe

Hannah Bargawi & Giovanni Cozzi

This article explores a gendered expansionary macroeconomic scenario for Europe as an alternative to current austerity policies over the medium term. Using a non-equilibrium structuralist macroeconomic model, it demonstrates that the dual aim of economic growth and increases in men’s and women’s employment can be achieved by adopting gender-sensitive expansionary macroeconomic policies. Based on historical data series, three scenarios for Europe for the 2015–25 period are compared: continued austerity, a gender-neutral expansionary scenario, and a gendered expansionary scenario. Projections for the gendered expansionary scenario suggest that 7.4 million more jobs could be created for women in the Eurozone and United Kingdom by reversing austerity policies and gendering and increasing government expenditure and private investment. Further, higher growth rates under this scenario lead to significant reductions of debt-to-GDP ratios and lower budget deficits. The study recommends Europe should roll back austerity policies and embark on a new gender-aware economic trajectory.

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