Economic empowerment

Syrian refugees and Lebanese women learn how to make fishing nets in order to help them find work. Lebanon 2013.

Our analysis on youth skills, women’s employment and the care economy has informed donor, government and international policy processes. Our work explores women’s economic empowerment from adolescence to adulthood, including skills development and access to productive assets; credit and decent employment; access to and control over land; and gender norms that limit women’s financial inclusion.

We also examine how social and gender norms shape expectations around the occupations people should work, as well as the effects of care responsibilities and harassment on economic inclusion and strategies for shifting them.

Our research also explores the role of women in agriculture and the effects of agricultural development and economic empowerment programmes on their labour trajectories and their agency. One example is our work supporting the Youth Forward Learning Partnership, where we address the challenges that rural women face in agriculture, their role as economic agents and the effects of Youth Forward on women’s access to jobs, financial services and the expansion of the economic opportunities available to them. This work has influenced policymakers and others to adopt and support successful employment of women and entrepreneurship models.