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.




Women’s equal access to and control over economic and financial resources is critical for the achievement of gender equality and the empowerment of women and for equitable and sustainable economic growth and development. Economic resources refer to the direct factors of production such as “immoveable” assets, including land, housing, common pool resources and infrastructure, as well as “moveable” assets, such as productive equipment, technology and livestock. Financial resources refer to money-based resources, including government expenditures, private financial flows and official development assistance, as well as income, credit, savings and remittances. Both economic and financial resources have important implications for women’s economic roles in sustaining household livelihoods, in labour markets and in the wider economy.


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