Discrimination and access to capital: Experimental evidence from Ethiopia

Working paper Women's Economic Empowerment, Inclusive Growth and SGB Evidence Fund

Access to capital is critical to business growth and productivity, yet female business owners are less likely to receive formal financing. Using a large-scale field experiment in Ethiopia, we show that gender discrimination by financial providers is unlikely to be a key contributor to this gap, and that there is no meaningful trade-off between gender equity and allocating capital to high-performing businesses.