To read this content please select one of the options below:

Impact of exposure to mass media on female empowerment: evidence from India

Shatanjaya Dasgupta (Department of Economics, Beloit College, Beloit, Wisconsin, USA)

International Journal of Development Issues

ISSN: 1446-8956

Article publication date: 20 June 2019

Issue publication date: 24 June 2019




The purpose of this paper is to investigate if women’s exposure to mass media, i.e. television, radio, and print media, is a determinant of female empowerment in India. Indicators of empowerment include female autonomy in domestic decision-making, freedom of movement, financial knowledge and independence, attitudes regarding acceptability of violence against women, actual and desired fertility and use and decisions about contraception.


Data for the analysis come from two rounds of the National Family and Health Survey, a large-scale nationally representative household survey. First, ordinary least squares estimation is used to obtain the parameter estimates. To overcome endogeneity concerns, instrumental variables estimation is also used.


The results reveal a strong positive effect of exposure to mass media on women’s status in India.

Research limitations/implications

These findings highlight the effectiveness of mass media in influencing women positively.


This paper captures the cumulative effects of three types of media: television, radio and print media. It also takes advantage of the most recent data available together with using instrumental variables estimation to overcome endogeneity concerns.



Dasgupta, S. (2019), "Impact of exposure to mass media on female empowerment: evidence from India", International Journal of Development Issues, Vol. 18 No. 2, pp. 243-258.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles