In October 2020, Publish What You Fund embarked on a multi-year project (2020-2023) to improve the transparency of funding for women’s economic empowerment (WEE), women’s financial inclusion (WFI), women’s empowerment collectives (WECs), and gender integration (GI).
We have tracked international funding to WEE, WFI, WECs, and assessed gender integration approaches in Bangladesh, Kenya, and Nigeria. Our methodology for tracking funding is predicated on a holistic and rights-based approach that illustrates the numerous and intersecting dimensions of WEE. We tracked funding from bilateral, multilateral, development finance institutions, and philanthropic organisations between 2015–2019.
Given disparities in the distribution of unpaid care work within households and communities and the structural barrier this poses to WEE, we conducted an additional piece of research to understand which internationally funded WEE projects also addressed women and girl’s unpaid care.
As part of this study we also commissioned research by public expenditure experts to track national funding to WEE, WFI, and WECs in Bangladesh, Nigeria, Kenya, Ethiopia, Uganda and Pakistan.
This project was funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. We collaborated with the International Center for Research on Women as well as a number of other grantees.
WEE is key to the realisation of women’s rights and their full participation in society and the world of work, helping both to reduce poverty for all people and achieve gender equality. However, with the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic implications WEE has not only stagnated since 2020 but is in reverse.
Although governments and international funders increasingly recognise the importance of funding and advancing WEE, there is a limited understanding of who funds it, how, and with what results. Without this information, it remains difficult for policymakers, funders, and gender advocates to make decisions and/or advocate for the best funding allocations and approaches.
Through multi-stakeholder consultation, conceptualise new approaches and develop tools to track funding to women’s economic empowerment, financial inclusion, and empowerment collectives and assess gender integration.
Produce robust evidence and recommendations for the improved reporting and publication of information on donor’s gender integration policies and funding to women’s economic empowerment, financial inclusion and empowerment collectives.