Women's Economic Empowerment Resource Guide

This Resource Guide aims to link Oxfam staff with the best resources, tools and evidence of what works on Women's Economic Empowerment to support improved WEE programming and gender mainstreaming in Oxfam's programmes.

What is WEE?

Effective economic empowerment for women occurs when women enjoy their rights to control and benefit from resources, assets, income and their own time, and when they have the ability to manage risk and improve their economic status and wellbeing.

Conceptual Framework on WEE (2017)

List of resources

Title Description

UN High Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment: Reports and Toolkits

UN Secretary-General’s High Level Panel on WEE, 2017

Includes reports (which make the case for women’s economic empowerment and dives into the 7 drivers of change to break the constraints to WEE) and 7 toolkits related to each driver (i.e. changing norms, unpaid care work, building assets, strengthening representation, etc). Priority recommendations related to each driver of change and the broader enabling environment on pg.15 in this report.

Title Description
Gender Analysis
Title Description
Programme Design

Women’s Economic Leadership: A guide to implementation

Norman Sarria and Rebecca Fries, 2014

This short guide provides helpful suggestions for designing programmes aimed at enhancing women’s economic empowerment and leadership. Pg 10-12 features a diagram and table of the 7 steps of the Women’s Economic Leadership approach, moving from situational assessment and diagnosis to making viable business plans for women and influencing positive changes at household level, all while engaging others.

To complement this are a series of short powerpoint presentations, including one describing how to move from gender analysis to identifying interventions which are both economically-viable and promising for women’s economic empowerment and another outlining how to address household dynamics that inhibit women’s leadership in the market.

Meaningful Action: Effective approaches to women's economic empowerment in agriculture

Thalia Kidder, David Bright and Caroline Green, 2014

Short, accessible report that presents the case for, and examples of, designing integrated interventions to achieve meaningful economic empowerment for women in agriculture.

Gendered Action Learning System (GALS)

Thies Reemer and Maggie Makanza, 2014

GALS is an innovative methodology for community-led empowerment, designed for integration in rural development programmes and based on principles of inclusion, respect and equity. It is a robust self-mobilization methodology that enables marginalized people to control their own development process, change gender relations, reverse peer pressure and change social norms. It is integrated into value chain development, financial services, economic planning or other interventions. There are sections covering catalysing change and action, as well as mapping and scoping, including notes for programme design.

Title Description
Programme Implementation

Promoting Women's Economic Empowerment: Beyond-Production in Market Systems Programs

Erin Markel, Emilie Getliffe, Brian Heilman, Lis Meyers, 2016

This brief looks at a range of strategies and case studies that promote women’s economic empowerment by designing interventions that promote women in beyond-production activities.

Title Description
Monitoring, Evaluation & Learning

Understanding and Measuring Women's Economic Empowerment; Definition, Framework and Indicators

Anne Marie Golla, Anju Malhotra, Priya Nanda, and Rekha Mehra, 2011

This is a short general framework and indicator guide on WEE. See pgs.7-9 for a list of possible indicators related to: reach and process, economic advancement and agency or power.

Measured Gendered Impact in Private Sector Development

Sonia Jordan, Gareth Davies, Alexis Morcrette, and Mollie Liesner, 2016

This report provides some background into the complexity of measuring gendered impact in private sector development programmes, especially relevant to interventions for market system facilitation, value chains and business environment reform and for those who want to measure income with a gender lens. There is a ‘Counting Approach’ table that goes through the advantages and limitations of various approaches to beneficiary counting and sex-disaggregation (pg.14-15). It also provides some helpful suggestions, such as examples of WEE-specific indicators for logframes (pg.19), a checklist for ensuring gender-responsive monitoring (pg.22) and a list of potential areas for qualitative enquiry (pg.30).

Title Description
Violence Against Women

DFID Guidance Note: Addressing Violence Against Women and Girls Through DFID's Economic Development and Women's Economic Empowerment Programmes

Georgia Taylor, 2015

This resource can be used as a guide for how to negotiate contexts where VAWG is most likely to occur or be perpetuated. It also provides a guide for how to conduct a situation analysis to avoid VAWG in WEE programming.

Toolkit for Integrating GBV Prevention and Response into Economic Growth Projects

USAID, 2014

This toolkit provides guiding principles and practical strategies for integrating prevention and response of Gender Based Violence into any type of economic empowerment or markets project. The table on pg.23 gives a good overview of practical steps for integrating it into a project, and further sections gives suggested strategies, activities and indicators forintegrating it into related subsectors, such as agriculture and food security (from pg.24), value chain development (pg.30), enterprise development (pg.34) and access to finance (pg.39), among others.

Helpdesk Research Report: Economic Empowerment and Violence Against Women and Girls

Erika McAslan Fraser, GSDRC, 2012

This resource gives examples of ways in which WEE programming can perpetuate VAWG and how to ensure this doesn't happen in programming.

Title Description
Unpaid Care Work

Who Cares: Unpaid care work, poverty and women's / girl's human rights (video)

IDS, 2013

Short video about unpaid care work and its link to women and girl's economic empowerment and their human rights.

Market systems approaches to enabling women’s economic empowerment through addressing unpaid care work

Jodie Thorpe, Mar Maestre and Thalia Kidder, 2016

This framing document sets out how care provision can be integrated within a market systems approach and explores three different ways that programmes can consider unpaid care, including: adapting programme delivery to take account of unpaid care work; designing interventions to address specific constraints; and focusing on unpaid care as a strategic market sector.

Title Description
Engaging the Private Sector

Measuring Women’s Economic Empowerment in Private Sector Development: Guidelines for Practitioners

IDS, 2013

Guidelines for integrating a WEE approach tailored to private sector development programmes. It shows a continuum of 5 common approaches to WEE in private sector development programming, from ‘do no harm’ to gender aware, gender mainstreaming, women targeted or some combination of them all (pg.6). It suggests steps and key questions for creating a strategic results framework linked to a WEE pathway of change (pg.9).

It has a special focus on measuring changes in WEE and especially on household-level dynamics and changes, not only enterprise-level results. It suggests different indicators according to the chosen approach to WEE, and encourages a mix of access to resources and agency and quantitative and qualitative indicators. The guidelines include a basket of indicators to measure WEE household-level dynamics in a private sector development programme (table pg.19-21) and strategies to integrate WEE into typical quantitative and qualitative measurement tools (pg.24).

Talking to the private sector on women and gender equality

Thalia Kidder

This Powerpoint presentation considers ways to engage with the private sector in discussions around promoting women’s economic leadership.

Title Description
Engaging Men and Boys

Journeys of Transformation: A Training Manual for Engaging Men as Allies in Women’s Economic Empowerment

CARE International and Promundo US, 2014

This a guide for trainers working with men and their partners in economic empowerment programs for women. In the manual there is a good explanation of why it is important to engage men as allies. It suggests a cycle of 2-2.5 hour weekly group education sessions and provides implementation and facilitation guidance for the 16 sessions which are divided into three thematic “blocks:” a Business block, a Health block, and a Laws and Policies block.

Promoting Gender-Transformative Change with Men: A Manual to Spark Critical Reflection on Harmful Gender Norms with Men and Boys in Aquatic Agricultural Systems

Promundo US and AAS, 2016

This practical manual can guide programmes hoping to create and facilitate critical reflection and action on harmful masculinities and their effects on the lives of women, girls and men themselves. The manual contains 13 activity-based group sessions, as well as guidelines for session facilitation. The goal is to encourage men to actively promote gender equality in their own lives, in their households and in the larger community with individual sessions focusing on things like promoting shared financial and household decision-making between partners, increasing negotiation and communication skills via cross-gender dialogue and understanding how to stop cycles of violence, including economic violence. There is also a tool to guide facilitators in the development of community-based campaigns.