2009 World Survey on the Role of Women in Development

Women's Control over Economic Resources and Access to Financial Resources, Including Microfinance

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Ensuring women’s economic empowerment and access to and control over resources requires an integrated approach to growth and development, focused on gender-responsive employment promotion and informed by the interdependency between economic and social development. Social objectives need to be incorporated into economic policies. Economic growth strategies should give attention to the real economy and focus on creating a gender-sensitive macroeconomic environment, full employment and decent work, access to land, property and other productive resources as well as financial services, and full coverage of social protection measures. The Survey outlines a number of concrete recommendations in these critical areas, which if adopted, will facilitate women’s equitable access to and control over economic and financial resources.



Access to land, housing and other productive resources

The mix of activities that make up household livelihood strategies in many parts of the world requires access to a range of productive resources. Land and housing function as sites of production, stores of value, buffers against contingencies, sources of income and collateral for credit for consumption and investment purposes. They also provide security and define social identity. Land and other natural resources, together with the infrastructure and services needed to realize their productive potential, are critical to rural and urban livelihoods. Women and men in rural areas need access to water and forest products, as well as to productive inputs for farm and off-farm work, to support their livelihood strategies.


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