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Data Set Description

G2LM|LIC - Women’s Well-Being During a Pandemic and its Containment Logo

Data is based on a phone survey of 1,545 rural Indian households collected in August 2020 in 20 districts across 6 states (Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra) in Northern India in August 2020. Households participated in a 20–30 min survey with two parts, a household head module and a female respondent module. In the household head module the household head surveyed about the household’s socioeconomic conditions, household head’s income, the male and female heads’ nutrition, and the number of days the respondent wished for more food for themselves or their children. The nutrition questions were taken from the National Family and Health Survey (NFHS) 2015–16, allowing to use the pre-pandemic responses to the survey from the same district to benchmark nutritional outcomes.

After the head module, if the head was male, the head was asked to pass the phone to a female household member (typically the female household head). The female responded to an additional survey asking about her mental health and status within the household, as well as if this had changed since the pandemic. In cases where the respondent to the head module was female, the same respondent answered the female survey. Altogether, this allowed the female module to be conducted with 573 women. To ascertain information on women’s mental health, a selection of questions from the PHQ9 depression diagnostic scale and the GAD7 anxiety scale was asked.

For a subset of questions, respondents’ were asked if outcomes have changed due to the pandemic. For example, for each of the mental health questions above (as well as the safety question), respondents were asked a follow-up question about whether their experiences have improved, worsened, or stayed the same since the pandemic. Measuring changes in these outcomes, enables to both assess the aggregate effects of the pandemic and measure the relationship between lockdowns and outcome variables, accounting for pre-pandemic differences across individuals.


The sample was randomly drawn from a sample of lactating mothers that filed organization IDinsight had previously surveyed in 2019. The lactating mothers sample was in turn drawn from a combination of voter rolls and community health worker registers. The voter rolls are representative of the population and compare well with averages from census and survey data.

Additional data on case rates/deaths

The phone survey data were supplemented with additional district level data on COVID-19 cases and deaths between the start of the pandemic and the time of the survey. Also hospitalization data from HMIS were used data. All this data is assembled by the Development Data Lab India.

Date Created: 2022-03-22

Scope of Data Set


Time Periods: August 2020


G2LM|LIC - Women’s Well-Being During a Pandemic and its Containment, 2020. Research Data Center of IZA (IDSC). Version 1.0. doi:10.15185/glmlic.708.1

Researchers working with the “G2LM|LIC - Women’s Well-Being During a Pandemic and its Containment” are obligated to acknowledge the data base and its documentation within their publications, including the DOI, by using this reference.

Natalie Bau, Gaurav Khanna, Corinne Low, Manisha Shah, Sreyashi Sharmin, Alessandra Voena, Women’s well-being during a pandemic and its containment, Journal of Development Economics,Volume 156, 2022, 102839

Key reference

Restricted Access

  1. Bau, Natalie (UCLA, United States of America)
  2. Khanna, Gaurav (UCSD, United States of America)
  3. Low, Corinne (Upenn, United States of America)
  4. Shah, Manisha (UCLA, United States of America)
  5. Sharmin, Sreyashi (Stanford, United States of America)
  6. Voena, Alessandra (Stanford, United States of America)

Longitudinal survey data


Access to the data is provided to non-for-profit research, replication and teaching purposes. The data is available from the Research Data Center of IZA (IDSC).
Please contact IDSC for any access requests.

Geographic Coverage: