A widespread phenomenon of Third World cities is using homes not only for shelter, but also for income generation through informal-sector activities. Today, many women from low-income settlements have the potential to self-create jobs and have shown significant results in creating working spaces in their homes, despite every limitation. Although there exists a vast literature
about gender issues and home-based jobs as a survival strategy, the types of jobs and the way women create and transform domestic spaces for various economic activities have yet to be explored. One objective for today's global market is the targeting of women as cheap labour, achieved by using their domestic spaces within the sub-contracting system, especially in the low-income settlements of Third World cities. In Dhaka's bustees, similar features can be observed as a number of NGOs have introduced training programs and micro credit, especially for women to use their domestic spaces for income generation. This study explores the potential of the women and the domestic spaces in the bustees; and how the women are involved in such economic activities in Dhaka. Three bustee settlements, based on different housing policies, have been investigated to explore home based jobs and the physical spaces. Two factors (tenure security and location) are important in categorizing the home based jobs and the extent of transformation in these settlements.
S. Mahmud. Women and the transformation of domestic spaces for income generation in Dhaka bustees. Cities (2003) 20 (5) 321-329. [DOI: 10.1016/S0264-2751(03)00049-0]