DAI to Host Lab on Women’s Economic Empowerment at European Development Days

July 31, 2013

DAI is pleased to have been selected to host a lab at the annual European Development Days event, held in Brussels on November 26-27. EUDevDays, as it is known, is Europe’s premier forum on development cooperation between international organizations, and business, political, academic, and civil society leaders.

This year’s theme—”A decent life for all by 2030: Building a consensus for a new development agenda”—centers on the post-2015 debate and the need to agree on a strong common European position advocating an integrated approach to address global poverty and sustainable development.

DAI’s lab was conceived by gender expert Anne Simmons-Benton and our European Commission team in London. The lab poses the question: “How can we harness public-private partnerships to better incorporate women in global supply chains?”

Many private-sector actors see working with women as crucial to their business and corporate social responsibility agendas. However, they tend to be hindered in including women entrepreneurs and women-owned small firms in their value chains by quality assurance issues.

This is where public-private partnerships (PPPs) come in. PPPs can help bridge the gap between women producers and large buyers, argues Simmons-Benton, who believes more generally that PPPs will be critical to post-2015 development as a means of unlocking the potential of sustainable funding from the private sector.

Expanding women’s access to markets through global supply chains will have ramifications far beyond their economic standing. Women and families with sustainable livelihoods are better placed to fund education for themselves and their families, and empowered to participate in public life and democratic processes.

Learn more about other labs and the entire EUDevDays program by following @eudevdays on Twitter (tweet with the #EDD13 hashtag), on Facebook, or via eudevdays.eu.

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