Document Type : Original Article

Authors

1 Associate Professor, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, Lorestan University

2 Master Graduate of Rural Development, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, Lorestan University

3 Lorestan University

Abstract

The relationship between women's empowerment and microfinance has been studied in many countries, including Iran. But few studies have examined the impact of women's microfinance consumption path on their empowerment. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to answer the important question of what effect the path of microcredit consumption has on women's empowerment. Given the importance of the type of loan used in the women economic empowerment, 13 ways of spending by women were identified. These routes can be divided into three general paths: (1) start a small business, (2) indirect investment with the possibility of return (3) spending the loan without the possibility of its return. The main question is how much women are empowered if they choose each of these paths? The statistical population of this study consisted of 800 women in Nahavand Township. Sample size was determined according to Krejcie and Morgan table and 260 persons were selected and stratified sampling was done with proportional assignment. Questionnaire's reliability and validity confirmed respectively through computing Cronbach's alpha coefficient (more than 0.7) and content validity. Data analyzed by SPSS20 software. The results showed that women in first path became more empowered than the other two groups. Choosing the second path, although caused women a little more empowered than the third group, they does not make a significant difference in their level of the empowerment with the third group. It is imperative that credit-paying institutions exercise greater control over how women use their credit by fundamentally reviewing payment laws.

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