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Achieving women's economic empowerment: what will it take?

Time (GMT +01) 14:30 16:15

Achieving women's economic empowerment: what will it take?


Joy Lo Dico - Journalist, London Evening Standard



Claire Melamed - Managing Director, ODI


Members of the High-Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment:

Fiza Farhan – CEO, Buksh Foundation

Tina Fordham – Managing Director and Chief Global Political Analyst, Citi Research

Alicia Girón – Professor at the Economic Research Institute of the National University of Mexico

The Rt. Hon. Justine Greening MP – Secretary of State for International Development, UK


Investing in women’s economic empowerment is crucial for gender equality and women’s rights, poverty eradication and inclusive economic growth. Women make enormous contributions to economies, whether in businesses, on farms, as entrepreneurs or employees, or by doing unpaid care work at home. The realisation of economic justice and equality will be crucial for governments to achieve Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

Yet, significant gender inequalities in economic participation and the distribution of economic resources persist globally. Women also remain disproportionately affected by poverty, discrimination and exploitation. Gender discrimination means women often end up in insecure, low-wage jobs, and constitute a small minority of those in senior positions. It curtails access to economic assets such as land and loans. It limits participation in shaping economic and social policies. Because women perform the bulk of household work, they often also have little time left to pursue economic opportunities.

Earlier this year, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced the world’s first High-Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment, with the aim of providing leadership on how to close global economic gender gaps.  The panel unites leaders of the IMF, the World Bank and UN Women, as well as leading economic experts, academics, trade union leaders, business, civil society and government representatives, all committed to identifying the most promising workable and practical solutions which will fast-track women’s economic empowerment.

The Panel recognises that a woman is economically empowered when she has both the ability to succeed and advance economically and the power to make and act on economic decisions.

Four leading panel members ask the audience to share their own insights and experiences at this public consultation that will shape the High-Level Panel’s first report, due in September 2016.

In your experience, what will make a real difference to women’s economic empowerment?

Ahead of the event, we encourage you to answer this important question and post any other thoughts in the comments section below.

Join ODI and the High-Level Panel Secretariat either in person or online to have your ideas heard!


@ODIdev @Empower_Women @DFID_UK

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