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Interactions between microfinance programmes and non-economic empowerment of women associated with intimate partner violence in Bangladesh: a cross-sectional study



Interactions between microfinance programmes and non-economic empowerment of women associated with intimate partner violence in Bangladesh: a cross-sectional study



Bmj Open 3(12): E002941



This study aims to examine the associations between microfinance programme membership and intimate partner violence (IPV) in different socioeconomic strata of a nationally representative sample of women in Bangladesh. The cross-sectional study was based on a nationally representative interview survey of 11 178 ever-married women of reproductive age (15-49 years). A total of 4465 women who answered the IPV-related questions were analysed separately using χ(2) tests and Cramer's V as a measure of effect size to identify the differences in proportions of exposure to IPV with regard to microfinance programme membership, and demographic variables and interactions between microfinance programme membership and factors related to non-economic empowerment were considered. Only 39% of women were members of microfinance programmes. The prevalence of a history of IPV was 48% for moderate physical violence, 16% for severe physical violence and 16% for sexual violence. For women with secondary or higher education, and women at the two wealthiest levels of the wealth index, microfinance programme membership increased the exposure to IPV two and three times, respectively. The least educated and poorest groups showed no change in exposure to IPV associated with microfinance programmes. The educated women who were more equal with their spouses in their family relationships by participating in decision-making increased their exposure to IPV by membership in microfinance programmes. Microfinance plans are associated with an increased exposure to IPV among educated and empowered women in Bangladesh. Microfinance firms should consider providing information about the associations between microfinance and IPV to the women belonging to the risk groups.

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Accession: 053906561

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 24319278

DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2013-002941


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