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International Monetary Fund. External Relations Dept.

A recent IMF Working Paper examined how differences in economic choices between men and women may lead to different outcomes for the macroeconomy and thus have implications for desirable fiscal and monetary policies. Gender-based differences in economic behavior have long been integrated into models of economic development and in the fields of labor economics and public finance. However, in the past two decades, researchers have studied the macroeconomic implications of gender-based differences. The United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals have explicitly linked economic progress to the equalization of opportunities for women. These goals thus recognize the importance not only of raising the status of women, but also of narrowing disparities between women and men. These gender disparities are often greatest in the poorest countries.

Janet G. Stotsky

The June 2007 issue of F&D spotlights gender equality. The lead article discusses progress toward fulfilling the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) on redressing gender discrimination and empowering women and related MDGs. The section also looks at how budgeting with gender issues in mind can help countries promote gender equality and what needs to be done to get girls from 'excluded' social groups into school. Other articles focus on Asia 10 years after the financial crisis, the implications of China's and India's growing ties with Africa, and making remittances work for Africa. 'Country Focus' looks at the challenges facing Bulgaria now that it has joined the European Union, 'Picture This' highlights the globalization of labor, and 'Back to Basics' gives a primer on microfinance. Two other pieces discuss the efficiency of public spending in Latin America and how countries can use the public sector balance sheet approach to diagnose vulnerabilities that are not immediately visible in the budget.

Ann Mari May

This paper highlights that one of the most dramatic developments in the 20th century was the entry of women into economic and political spheres previously occupied almost exclusively by men. Although women are making progress in eliminating gender disparities, they still lag men in the workplace and in the halls of government. These gaps are found throughout the world, but are particularly pronounced in developing economies. So far, the greatest success has been in reducing education and health disparities and the least in increasing women’s economic and political influence.

Rosemary Bellew, Laura Raney, and K. Subbarao

For the latest thinking about the international financial system, monetary policy, economic development, poverty reduction, and other critical issues, subscribe to Finance & Development (F&D). This lively quarterly magazine brings you in-depth analyses of these and other subjects by the IMF’s own staff as well as by prominent international experts. Articles are written for lay readers who want to enrich their understanding of the workings of the global economy and the policies and activities of the IMF.

Ms. Laura Wallace

The World Bank’s proposed action plan on achieving the Millennium Development Goal of universal primary education by 2015 calls for a new development compact. The idea is that governments would demonstrate their commitment to education through efforts to radically transform their education systems, and external partners would provide financial and technical support in a transparent, predictable, and flexible manner. The plan also calls for “fast-tracking” some 10 countries for quick and incremental support.

Ana Revenga and Sudhir Shetty

Young people, hardest hit by the global economic downturn, are speaking out and demanding change. F&D looks at the need to urgently address the challenges facing youth and create opportunities for them. Harvard professor David Bloom lays out the scope of the problem and emphasizes the importance of listening to young people in "Youth in the Balance." "Making the Grade" looks at how to teach today's young people what they need to get jobs. IMF Deputy Managing Director, Nemat Shafik shares her take on the social and economic consequences of youth unemployment in our "Straight Talk" column. "Scarred Generation" looks at the effects the global economic crisis had on young workers in advanced economies, and we hear directly from young people across the globe in "Voices of Youth." Renminbi's rise, financial system regulation, and boosting GDP by empowering women. Also in the magazine, we examine the rise of the Chinese currency, look at the role of the credit rating agencies, discuss how to boost the empowerment of women, and present our primer on macroprudential regulation, seen as increasingly important to financial stability. People in economics - C. Fred Bergsten, American Globalist. Back to basics - The multi-dimensional role of banks in our financial systems.