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Project Details


Topic: Gender Justice
Researchers: Prof. Asad Islam, PhD, Emily Beam, Merfeld, Joshua D.
Partners: Centre for Development Economics and Sustainability, Monash University BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD)
Study Area: Bangladesh
Duration: 2023-09-01 to 2025-02-28


Gender Norms at Work: Impacts on Women’s Hiring and Workplace Experiences in Bangladesh


Gender norms profoundly affect women in male-dominated workplaces, limiting opportunities and hindering productivity. This study with BIGD delves into these issues in Bangladesh's manufacturing sector, aiming to uncover solutions and enhance workplace dynamics. 

Project Description:

Led by GDRI in collaboration with BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD), this research investigates gender norm impacts in small and medium-sized manufacturing firms. Through randomized study and a year-long gender sensitivity curriculum, our goal is to understand gender attitudes’ influence on interactions and productivity. The research findings will guide strategies for fostering gender equality, employee satisfaction, and enhanced productivity.


  • Dr. Asadul Islam (Primary Chief Investigator (PCI)
  • Emily Beam (Chief Investigator (CI)
  • Joshua Merfeld (Chief Investigator (CI)

Status: Active

Study Area: Bangladesh

Contact: Ehsun Newaz; ehsun.newaz@gdri.org


This study examines how gender norms affect workplace productivity and employees’ workplace experiences. We will implement a randomized study with medium-sized, mixed-gender enterprises in Bangladesh to achieve three specific aims:

  1. Measuring gender norms and their influence on workplace interactions.
  2. Testing intensive workplace training's impact on social norms, women’s experiences, and behavior.
  3. Measuring gender norms’ impact on productivity.

Theme: Social Compliance and the Environment theme

Specific Role of GDRI:

  1. Conducting workshops for employees and managers.
  2. Developing action plans with managers to increase female representation and foster inclusivity.
  3. Facilitating monthly coaching sessions for female employees.
  4. Ensuring smooth intervention delivery.


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Global Development & Research Initiative Foundation (GDRI) is a non-profit research organization registered with the Registrar of Joint Stock Companies and Firms in Bangladesh.