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Women entrepreneurs have always faced multiple challenges—from lack of working capital to difficulties in coordination of their businesses due to their care and domestic responsibilities. These obstacles have only increased since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. 70% of women entrepreneurs reported being ineligible for credit under the recently launched Government of India’s AtmaNirbhar Bharat economic stimulus package.
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In 2010, UN Women and UN Global Compact Network developed the Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs). Forged through an international multi-stakeholder consultative process, the WEPs provide a “gender lens” through which business can analyse current initiatives, benchmarks and reporting practices. Informed by real-life business practices, the Principles help companies tailor existing policies and practices – or establish needed new ones – to realize women’s empowerment in the workplace, marketplace and communities.
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Since 2014, UN Women has played a significant role in convening diverse stakeholders to respond to and localize the emerging and new global paradigms on women’s unpaid work, with a special focus on Goal 5 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A loose alliance called the Collective on Women’s Unpaid Work was formed to support the development of a common roadmap for policy and action, which included the recognition, reduction and redistribution of women’s unpaid work...
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Since 2014, UN Women has played a significant role in convening diverse stakeholders to respond to and localize the emerging and new global paradigms on women’s unpaid work, with a special focus on Goal 5 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A loose alliance called the Collective on Women’s Unpaid Work was formed to support the development of a common roadmap for policy and action, which included the recognition, reduction and redistribution of women’s unpaid work...
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This report provides a summary of the key findings and recommendations from the rapid safety and discrimination assessments carried out in 22 market locations across Fiji, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu. The assessments revealed challenges faced by women market vendors around their personal safety. Safe, accessible and inclusive work places are critical for women’s economic empowerment. The assessment results are meant to inform a range of Markets for Change (M4C) project stakeholders...
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Agriculture is the principal source of livelihood for more than 58% of the population in India. Evidence from various nationally representative survey points to the fact that an overwhelming majority of women are involved in agriculture as cultivators and agricultural labourers across rural India. Despite women’s vital contribution to agriculture and other allied sectors in India, they lack control over productive assets such as land and livestock and in accessing technologies, irrigation...
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The transgender (TG) community is one of the most marginalized social groups in India. Historically subjected to structural violence, the TG community continues to face widespread stigma and discrimination at the hands of their own families, society and even the state. Despite some recent progressive measures by the government, the community’s social mainstreaming and access to rights and entitlements remains shrouded in challenges. 'The Transgender Question in India: Policy and Budgetary...
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An assessment of programmes and schemes for the empowerment of religious minorities in India reveals that Muslim women and girls remain largely invisible in the overall policy framework. 'People at the margins: Whose Budgets? Whose Rights? - Locating Muslim Women in Indian Policy', published by UN Women and Ford Foundation draws from a study of the Prime Minister’s New 15 Points Programme in the four states of Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and Odisha, to identify key gaps in policy...
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The marginalization of Dalit women is specifically compounded by the absence of quality education and supportive infrastructure. The Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya Scheme (KGBVS) was launched to enable girls, predominantly from marginalized communities, to avail upper primary education through residential schooling. Data collected from 12 KGBVs in Aurangabad and Munger districts of Bihar reveal that aspirations of Dalit girls and their parents for quality education remain largely unfulfilled....
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UN Women commissioned BASIX--a new generation livelihood promotion institution--to carry out a gender analysis of banking sector policies, financial products and services in India. The project commenced in September 2012 and concluded in April 2013. Select banking sector policies were reviewed to identify barriers women face while accessing financial support and the appropriateness of financial products for women’s empowerment. Methods to draw gender responsive indicators for effective...
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Time to Act on Gender, Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction. An overview of progress in the Pacific region with evidence from The Republic of Marshall Islands, Vanuatu and Samoa. Gender equality and the empowerment of women become ever more important as the frequency and severity of storms, floods, drought and other climatic hazards increase in the Pacific region. Due to prevailing gender inequalities and social norms, women and girls are disproportionately affected by climate change and disaster...
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A National Stakeholder Consultation titled ‘Towards Gender Transformative Rural Livelihoods: Strategies for Convergence’ was organized by the Ministry of Rural Development (MoRD), Government of India, in collaboration with UN Women, on 3 and 4 November, 2015. The consultation sought to apply a gender lens to the design, implementation and monitoring of rural development policies and programmes. The Consultation was a platform to showcase good practices surrounding women’s...
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UN Women entered into a partnership with ANANDI to strengthen gender perspectives in the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM) and to gear the NRLM towards gender equality and women’s empowerment.  Two State Rural Livelihood Missions of Madhya Pradesh (MPSRLM) and Bihar (JEEViKA BRLPS) were identified, and pilots were initiated under this program in select districts. ANANDI and UN Women believe that there exists a unique opportunity within NRLM to promote women’s...
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In 2009, the Vanuatu Women’s Centre (VWC) in partnership with the Vanuatu National Statistics Office (VNSO) completed the first Vanuatu National Survey on Women’s Lives and Family Relationships. This survey found alarmingly high rates of violence against women and girls in Vanuatu: (*) “60 per cent of women in a relationship experienced physical and/or sexual violence by their husband/partner in their lifetime, and 44% suffered from either or both of these forms of violence in the last 12 months.” (*) “The prevalence of sexual violence...
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In Volume II of this report, we present detailed analysis of four industries/sectors that are regarded as green or ‘close to green’. This includes an analysis of the horticulture and agro processing industry in Bangladesh; agro processing in Bhutan; renewable energy and organic horticulture in India; and ecotourism in Nepal. The focus in each study is to examine the pattern of women’s employment in the relevant sector using information gathered directly from the fi eld and from...
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The impact of opening up of trade opportunities has always been diff erent for diff erent groups of people, often exacerbating inequalities in the absence of counteractive measures and barriers. While inequalities exist in many forms – across the rich and the poor, the skilled and unskilled, the urban and the rural –the focus of this research is on the inequality between women and men. When we add to this mix of trade and gender, the aspect of sustainability in development or...