• Understanding women’s empowerment using an exploratory mixed-methods index

    Author: Apollo M Nkwake, Baraka Bensolomon, Melody Mentz, and Nadia Fouché

    Empowerment is a multi-dimensional and contextually nuanced construct, which poses measurement challenges. An important feature of indices is their ability to summarize multi- dimensional information into a single measure. However, the key limitation of indices is their inability to capture complex aspects that are best captured by qualitative methods. This article explores the development of an empowerment index using mixed-methods data in the context of a female scientist’s empowerment program to explore the relationship between program activities and empowerment, as well as participant demographics and empowerment. The article seeks to draw conclusions that will inform the design of indices for measuring women’s empowerment at the individual level in research contexts.

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