Working Paper

ICTD Working Paper 169

Women in Ethiopian Tax Administration: Evidence on Representation and Performance

Published on 1 August 2023

In the growing body of research on gender and taxation in low-income countries, the implications of having more women in tax administration have received relatively little attention. Using data from employee records and key informant interviews, we examine the representation of women in the workforce of the Ethiopian tax administration, as well as their performance and their misconduct.

The findings show that women dominate the overall workforce in most branch offices. However, women overwhelmingly occupy lower ranked positions and their engagement at the top level of management is quite limited. Our analysis of gender-disaggregated employee performance scores indicates that there is no conclusive evidence to claim women perform better than men employees, though most of the key informants tend to believe otherwise.

However, misconduct records present a strong case that women employees are less likely to commit serious disciplinary misconduct, such as corruption and breaching trust, and more likely to serve for a longer number of years compared to men employees. We also present cross-country comparisons with Uganda and other ATAF member countries.

Our overall findings underline the significant contributions of employing more women in tax administration and the need to further empower women through continued leadership training and mentoring programmes.

Cite this publication

Yimam, S. and Mekonnen, Y. (2023) Women in Ethiopian Tax Administration: Evidence on Representation and Performance, ICTD Working Paper 16, Brighton: Institute of Development Studies, DOI: 10.19088/ICTD.2023.034


Seid Yimam
Yalew Meknonnen

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published by
Institute of Development Studies


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