Investing in Women To Change the World

Posted by Caren Grown
September 20, 2011
Women Sow Paddy in a Field

In this era of slow growth, high unemployment, and fiscal woes, investing in women is an economic imperative. Fortunately, this recognition has taken hold in several quarters.

At the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit on Women and the Economy last week, Secretary Clinton argued that “by increasing women's participation in the economy and enhancing their efficiency and productivity, we can bring about a dramatic impact on the competitiveness and growth of our economies. Because when everyone has a chance to participate in the economic life of a nation, we can all be richer.” APEC adopted a Declaration that, for the first time, affirmed each member economy's commitment to improving women's access to capital and markets, building their capacities and skills, and supporting the rise of women leaders in the public and private sectors.

At the United Nations General Assembly this week, the U.S. Government is hosting an event that recognizes women's paid and unpaid roles in food security -- from planting crops, to caring for livestock, to processing and storing food, to preparing meals for family consumption. Women farmers are up to 30 percent less productive than male farmers, not because they work less, but because they have less access to fertilizer, tools, training, and especially land. And they have much less time to farm because they do most of the household work. The UN's Food and Agriculture Organization calculates that closing the resource gap could increase the yields of female farmers by 20 to 30 percent, which could raise total agricultural output in developing countries by 2.5-4 percent and reduce the number of hungry people in the world by 150 million.

This week the World Bank is releasing its first ever World Development Report 2012: Gender Equality and Development. The report concludes that productivity will be raised if the skills and talents of women and girls are used more fully; for instance, eliminating barriers that prevent women from working in certain occupations or sectors could reduce the productivity gap between male and female workers by one-third to one-half and increase output per worker by 3 to 25 percent across a range of countries.

The imperative to invest in women and girls is being embraced by the U.S. Government. President Obama's Feed the Future initiative seeks to reduce gender barriers in agriculture and scale up interventions that empower women farmers, harness new technologies, and measure progress. USAID is promoting women's entrepreneurship and access to finance, working with partners to reform legal and regulatory systems that are roadblocks to women's success, and supporting women leaders in the public and private sectors. Together with other donors, we are working to turn the recognition of women's contributions into genuine commitments to action.

For more on our work with women, check out a special gender-focused edition of USAID's FrontLines.Editor's Note: This entry also appears on the USAID Impact Blog.



South Korea
September 21, 2011

Palgye in South Korea writes:

Shown in the form of pictures were engaged in agriculture, they grow old mother in South Korea, took ill that can not be cured - the majority firmly back stubborn - like those who suffer, and I tried several times. Rather than the opposite, is there any other way I could. I have gone through the pain of the moment. 're Too sick to


I bought it, was sent scarves are manufactured in Italy. Italy's prime minister, but companies in Libya had to talk about how to advance. Italy raised concerns about default, even if you think that the situation is being controlled. .-- Think of control is impossible. I am now the president of France and Germany do not talk about Italy for the award, and think very carefully approach. Please ....

Was presented the President to a tie, the tie was, Italy, by designing, manufactured in Italy.

South Korea
September 21, 2011

Palgye in South Korea writes:

Developing countries have experience in farming-type Are You? Too, is difficult and painful. Is painful. Initially, you need to be engaged in agriculture, but to find another way to think. Does someone who is farming? Who did you easy?

From afar, but feels idyllic and peaceful, Try it yourself ... Come on, you should study all in the library, when you're new experience in developing countries would be the type of farming?

Traditionally, a woman's place in Asia rather than to participate directly in farming, sericulture and animal husbandry has a lot of history to the induced. And, although novel, but in Pearl Buck's land wangrung wife was working in rice fields, a scene that gave birth to a child, which is actually in South Korea was.

Women founded by a combination, to purchase machinery and co-states to guarantee and to set a grace period is three to five years, approximately 10 years to pay it back by dividing the value of machinery, co-cultivation and consumers Policies to encourage direct sales is also thought possible. Excellent quality of the carpet in the Middle East, but that has produced women who think money is very minimal. Individuals produce and how to sell to dealers, she thinks of the work will lose motivation. Still, Asia, the Middle East, India and Indochina, still, to compensate for women's work is very weak, I think.

Go ahead ... However, the representative of the day, even under the hot sun after conventional farming experience, will you have to enforce policies.

Raising this article, perhaps, go to the United States, you do not think anything will happen.

PS: U.S. to try to raise money, will go to China or Japan. You shall help me we should forget about the expected?


"Galaxy Tab" in order to introduce a Carbon Tax in Australia, the Australian prime minister's policy activities will be aggressively. I even hate you, "Galaxy Tab" to, Carbon Tax should be introduced to believe. It's my personal judgments, if you help, it would seem likely to be helpful to.

I am in Australia so do try to show an interest in ruling, Prime Minister delivered a message via Twitter to think. In my opinion, Give and Take to think.

However, the Ceo of Samsung Electronics in Korea than in China and there a close relationship? Fail before the LCD plant construction in China and I would have been expected after the deepest reflection, but he met someone very high in China, and the result?


I keep the tab order for the activity, Sec Hillary Clinton's active assistance is deemed necessary. Should I just quit? Even now the state is bankrupt, because of past experience, will try to continue. Once we finish, perhaps, think that the situation will need to homelessness.

Rather, Nicolas Sarkozy that the French president is elected, the more easy to believe.

Are my doctors tried to show in Australia, soon reactions are drawn, or politicians and companies in Korea,'m ignoring me.

Trying to make a plane the value of the U.S., China and Japan are about to go into.

In Moscow - the airport, will not go anymore.


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