Empowerment means that people -both women and
men – can take control over their lives: set their own
agendas ,gain skills (or have their own skills and knowledge
recognized), increase self-confidence, solve problems, and
develop self-reliance. It is both a process and an outcome.
1. Establish high-level corporate leadership for gender equality
2. Treat all women & men fairly at work – respect & support human rights &
3. Ensure health, safety, & well-being of all women & men worker.
4. Promote education, training, & professional development for women.
5. Implement enterprise development, supply chain, & marketing practices that
6. Promote equality through community initiatives & advocacy.
7. Measure & publicly report on progress to achieve gender equality.
Source : United Nation | The Global Compact
4. Empowering women to participate fully in economic life across all sectors and
throughout all levels of economic activity is essential to:
■ Build strong economies;
■ Establish more stable and just societies;
■ Achieve internationally agreed goals for development,
sustainability and human rights;
■ Improve quality of life for women, men, families and
■ Propel businesses’ operations and goals.
5. “ The Women’s Empowerment Principles are subtitled Equality Means Business because the
full participation of women benefits business, and indeed, all of us. Informed by leading
businesses’ policies and different sectors and around the world, the Principles offer a practical
approach to advance women, and point the way to a future that is both more prosperous and
more fair for everyone.”
Georg Kell, Executive Di rector of the UN Global Compact Office
6. 5 important dimensions of female empowerment
and opportunity have been chosen for examination,
based mainly on the findings of UNIFEM, concerning
global patterns of inequality between men & women:
1. Economic participation
2. Economic opportunity
3. Political empowerment
4. Educational attainment
5. Health and well-being
7. The economic participation of women— their presence in the workforce in
quantitative terms—is important not only for lowering the levels of poverty among women, but
also as an important step toward raising household income and encouraging economic
development in countries as a whole.
Economic opportunity concerns the quality of women’s economic involvement, beyond
their mere presence as workers. This is most commonly the result of negative or
obstructive attitudes, and of legal and social systems which use maternity laws and
benefits to penalize women economically for childbirth and child care responsibilities,
and discourage—or actively prevent— men from sharing family responsibilities.
Political empowerment refers to the equitable representation of women in decision-
making structures, both formal and informal, and their voice in the formulation of policies
affecting their societies. In order for spending and development priorities to change, there must
be at least a critical mass of women represented, who are learning the rules, using the rules and
hanging the rules of the decision-making “game,” and thus having an impact on discourse and
decisions at all levels, from the family, to the nation, to the international community.
8. Educational attainment is, without doubt, the most fundamental prerequisite for
empowering women in all spheres of society, for without education of comparable
quality and content to that given to boys and men, and relevant to existing knowledge
and real needs, women are unable to access well-paid, formal sector jobs, advance
within them, participate in, and be represented in government and gain political
influence. Moreover, the risk increases for society as a whole that the next generation
of children will be similarly ill-prepared.
Health and well-being is a concept related to the substantial differences between
women and men in their access to sufficient nutrition, healthcare and reproductive
facilities, and to issues of fundamental safety and integrity of person.
Source : World Economic Forum
9. “Gender equality: empowering women
so that development is effective”
• Of the 113 countries that failed to achieve gender parity in both
primary and secondary school enrolment by the target date of
2005, only 18 are likely to achieve the goal by 2015.
• More than 500 000 prospective mothers in developing
countries die annually in childbirth or of complications from
Source : 1. Millenium Development Goal Report 2008, UN
10. In some African countries, children of mothers who have spent five
years in primary education are 40% more likely to live beyond the
age of five.
• In India, if the ratio of female to male workers were increased by
10%, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) would rise by 8%.
• In sub-Saharan Africa it has been calculated that agricultural
productivity could increase by up to 20% if women’s access to
resources such as land, seed and fertilizer were equal that of men².
• Women reinvest 90% of their income in their families and
communities, compared to men who reinvest only 30% to 40% of
Source 2 : Gender equality at the heart of development – Why the role of women is crucial to ending
world poverty, Department for International Development, 2007.
Source 3 : Phil Borges (2007), Women Empowered: Inspiring Change in the Emerging World. New York.
11. Spotlight on Women and
When women are afforded the equality of opportunity that is their basic human right, the results
are striking. In 2006, estimated that over the past decade, women’s work more to global growth
than China. Source : The
If Japan raised its share of working women to American levels, it would boost annual growth by
0.3%over 20 years, according to The Economist. Source : Ibid
In 2007, Goldman Sachs reported that different countries and regions of the world could
dramatically increase GDP simply by reducing in employment rates between men and women:
the Euro zone could increase GDP by 13%; Japan by 16%; the US by 9%.
Source : Goldman Sachs
Group, Inc. 2007. ‘Gender Inequality, Growth and Global Ageing.