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Abstract

The objective of this article is to examine the impact of the OPORTUNIDADES-PROSPERA conditional cash transfer program on women heads of household in Mexico. The target of the empowerment of women household heads in the program is predominantly focused on developing human capital, shown by the increase of children in the school by the women household heads. The database was based on the data gathered through the Survey unique questionnaire of socio-economic information (CUIS) realized by the Social Development Secretariat (SEDESOL), through the PROSPERA National Coordination, which operate the OPORTUNIDADES-PROSPERA Program. The database that was analyzed consisted of 3,762 families that profited between 2004 and 2017 and settled in the 32 states of the Mexican Republic. We drew on Amartya Sen's capabilities theory and Martha Nussbaum's later contribution to this theory, to analyse the data which focused on the capacities necessary for women to achieve the desired well-being and overcome the condition of inherited poverty. A methodology with a quantitative-descriptive approach is used through two comparisons. The first focus is on the beneficiary households of the OPORTUNIDADES-PROSPERA program, and the second focus is on the total income of the beneficiary families of the program. This method allows the researcher to have a subjective view of the studied phenomenon and to understand the social world associated with that program. After conducting this study, we concluded that most of the households that entered the program have changed the composition of the head of household. This is because the new access to income transfer has provided some benefits to these women in terms of empowerment. The results show us that the conditional cash transfer programs in households headed by women are not always enough to overcome initial poverty. Also, governments have not been able to combat poverty that affects households headed by women.

Note on the Author

Doctorate student in Administrative-Economic Sciences, at the Institute of Administrative Economic Sciences (ICEA), Autonomous University of the State of Hidalgo (UAEH), Mexico. Her interest is related in women’s studies and poverty. She is also involved in women's empowerment activities in Mexico. Email: ru108962@uaeh.edu.mx ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7338-459X*Corresponding author

Full-time Research Professor at the Institute of Administrative Economic Sciences (ICEA), Autonomous University of the State of Hidalgo (UAEH), Mexico. His interest is related in poverty, gender and employees. Email: eduardor@uaeh.edu.mx ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2232-7544

Full-time Research Professor at the Institute of Administrative Economic Sciences (ICEA), Autonomous University of the State of Hidalgo (UAEH), Mexico. His interest is related in development and corporate governance. He has directed several doctoral theses on various research topics. Email: sjimenez@uaeh.edu.mx ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6137-5549

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