Isadora Angelini Frankenthal

Second Year

Research Fields

Development Economics, Political Economy

Contact Information

Email Address isadoraf@mit.edu

Working Papers 

Female Labor Productivity Reduces Domestic Violence: Evidence from Peru [SRRN Link]

This study investigates the impact of greater economic opportunities for women on domestic violence in Peru. I construct exogenous shifters of gender-specific labor productivity by exploiting gender-specific specialization in the production of major export crops, along with time variation in international crop prices and cross-sectional variation in crop planting pat-terns. Female labor productivity reduces domestic violence, including severe physical violence and female homicide. I find no evidence that these effects are driven by changes in total household income, increases in women’s bargaining power in the household, or changes in beliefs about the role and treatment of women. I argue instead that results are driven by increases in women’s independence and the ability to seek support outside the domestic sphere. The effects are stronger in districts with more unequal gender norms, in contrast to theories of “male backlash” that predict the opposite.


Other Research

Frankenthal, I. A., Alves, M. C., Tak, C., & Achatz, M. I. (2022). Cancer Surveillance for Patients with Li-Fraumeni Syndrome in Brazil: A Cost-Effectiveness AnalysisThe Lancet Regional Health–Americas12.

This study aims to assess the cost-effectiveness of introducing annual screening in the Brazilian public health-care system for patients diagnosed with Li-Fraumeni Syndrome, a prevalent cancer pre-disposition syndrome associated with high risks for a diverse spectrum of malignancies.


Frankenthal, I., & Dutta, D. (2021). Risk Factors for Gender-based Violence: The Case of Indian Agriculture. Oxfam Research Report. 

This study documents the incidence of domestic and workplace violence among Indian female agricultural workers, and the factors that put these women at risk. It also describes in depth the working conditions and gender-based violence in tea plantations, where the vast majority of labor is female and qualitative evidence suggests violence against women is particularly prevalent.