Education Elevating the Status of Women in India's Family Businesses

In India, women have always been powerful forces in politics. Indira Gandhi was probably the most dominating prime minister the country has ever had. Today, her daughter-in-law, Congress Party President Sonia Gandhi, is the most powerful person in New Delhi. But When it comes to business, women have had little opportunity — expected to move from the parental hearth to the husband's home, rather than play any role in the company.

Now, however, globalization, liberalization, the decay of the institution of marriage and a growing emphasis on education have helped to raise the status of women, at least in family businesses, according to a new article in India Knowledge at Wharton. Of those driving factors, education may be the most important, the article reports. Says Pradeep Mukerjee, founder-director of Confluence Coaching & Consulting, "Education and exposure [to other cultures] have led to greater societal acceptance of women participating in various walks of life, including business."

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