Equality MEans BusinEss1 Establish high-level corporate leadership for gender equality.2 Treat all women and men fairly at work – respect and support human rights and nondiscrimination.3 Ensure the health, safety and well-being of all women and men workers.4 Promote education, training and professional development for women.5 Implement enterprise development, supply chain and marketing practices that empower women.6 Promote equality through community initiatives UN Photo/StePheNie hollymaN and advocacy.7 Measure and publicly report on progress to achieve gender equality.
IntroductionEmpowEring womEn to participate companies tailor existing policies 189 countries at the Fourth Worldfully in economic life across all and practices —or establish needed Conference on Women in 1995 andsectors and throughout all levels new ones— to realize women’s the millennium Declaration adoptedof economic activity is essential to: empowerment. the Principles also by 189 countries in 2000, contribute■ Build strong economies; reflect the interests of governments to the overarching human rights and civil society and will support framework.1■ establish more stable and just interactions among stakeholders as these international standards societies; achieving gender equality requires illuminate our common aspiration for■ achieve internationally- the participation of all actors. as a a life where the doors of opportunity agreed goals for development, leader in gender equality, UNiFem are open to all. Where people can sustainability and human rights; brings three decades of experience live free from violence, exercise legal■ improve quality of life for women, to this partnership effort with the UN redress and expect states to live up men, families and communities; Global Compact, the world’s largest to their obligations to respect and and corporate citizenship initiative protect the human rights of women, with more than 7,000 business men and children and provide■ Propel businesses’ operations participants and other stakeholders appropriate government services and goals. involved in more than 135 countries. such as education and health.yet, ensuring the inclusion of in an increasingly globalized andwomen’s talents, skills, experience these conventions inform national interconnected world, utilizing all law and help shape common valuesand energies requires intentional social and economic assets isactions and deliberate policies. the adopted by institutions throughout crucial for success. yet, despite the world. Business leaders,Women’s empowerment Principles progress, women continueprovide a set of considerations to working in close association with to confront discrimination, their peers, with governments,help the private sector focus on marginalization and exclusion,key elements integral to promoting nongovernmental organizations and even though equality between the United Nations2, seek to applygender equality in the workplace, men and women stands as amarketplace and community. these international standards that universal international precept—a uphold an individual’s rights throughenhancing openness and inclusion fundamental and inviolable human their specifically designed policiesthroughout corporate policies and right. Nearly all countries have and programmes. their corporateoperations requires techniques, affirmed this value through their commitment, reflected through thetools and practices that bring recognition of the standards company’s mission statement andresults. the Women’s empowerment contained in international human supported through public reportingPrinciples, forged through an rights treaties, which articulate on policies and practices, attestsinternational multi-stakeholder for states a broad range of to the growing realization of howconsultative process led by the civil, political, economic, social important these values are toUnited Nations Development Fund and cultural rights. Distinctive business and their communities.3for Women (UNiFem) and the documents highlight a spectrumUnited Nations Global Compact While much has been accomplished of state responsibilities and human(UNGC), provide a “gender lens” through the integration of rights protections for women,through which business can survey principles and actions on corporate indigenous peoples, children,and analyze current initiatives, responsibility, diversity and workers and people with disabilities.benchmarks and reporting practices. inclusion, the full participation of additionally, internationally agreed- women throughout the privateinformed by real-life business on documents such as the Beijing sector – from the Ceo’s officepractices, the Principles help Platform for action adopted by all
to the factory floor to the supply chain – remains unfulfilled. Current research demonstrating that gender diversity helps business perform better signals that self interest and common interest can come together. UNiFem, the UN Global Compact, other leading UN agencies, the World Bank and the World economic Forum, reinforce the findings.4 Governments also recognize that women’s inclusion drives development, and acknowledge that achieving the millennium Development Goals and national economic and development plans requires rapidly moving towards gender equality.5 in a globally interdependent political, social and economic environment, partnerships play an increasingly vital role to: ■ Create a vibrant business environment involving a broad partnership of actors, enablers, contributors and innovators to open opportunities for women and men; and ■ enable the active and interactive participation of governments, international financial institutions, the private sector, investors, nongovernmental organizations, academia and professional organizations to work together. in the spirit of partnership, UNiFem and the UN Global Compact offer the Women’s empowerment Principles in the hope that usingUN Photo/t. BolStaD them as a targeted “gender lens” inspires and intensifies the efforts to bring women in at all levels. Equality does mean business. womens empowerment principles/equality means business ■ 1
Women’s Empowerment1 Leadership Promotes Gender Equality 2 Equal Opportunity, Inclusion and 3 Health, Safety and Freedom from Violence■ affirm high-level support and Nondiscriminiation ■ taking into account differential direct top-level policies for impacts on women and ■ Pay equal remuneration, gender equality and human men, provide safe working including benefits, for work of rights. conditions and protection equal value and strive to pay a■ establish company-wide from exposure to hazardous living wage to all women and goals and targets for gender materials and disclose men. equality and include progress potential risks, including to ■ ensure that workplace policies reproductive health. as a factor in managers’ and practices are free from performance reviews. ■ establish a zero-tolerance gender-based discrimination.■ engage internal and policy towards all forms of ■ implement gender-sensitive violence at work, including external stakeholders in the recruitment and retention verbal and/or physical development of company practices and proactively abuse and prevent sexual policies, programmes and recruit and appoint women harassment. implementation plans that to managerial and executive advance equality. ■ Strive to offer health insurance positions and to the corporate■ ensure that all policies are or other needed services board of directors. gender-sensitive – identifying – including for survivors of ■ assure sufficient participation domestic violence – and factors that impact women of women – 30% or greater ensure equal access for all and men differently – and that – in decision-making and employees. corporate culture advances governance at all levels and equality and inclusion. ■ Respect women and men across all business areas. workers’ rights to time off for ■ offer flexible work medical care and counseling options, leave and re-entry for themselves and their opportunities to positions of dependents. equal pay and status. ■ in consultation with ■ Support access to child and employees, identify and dependent care by providing address security issues, services, resources and including the safety of women information to both women traveling to and from work and and men. on company-related business. ■ train security staff and managers to recognize signs of violence against women and understand laws and company policies on human trafficking, labour and sexual exploitation.
Principles4 Education 5 Enterprise ■ Work with community stakeholders, officials and and Training Development, others to eliminate discrimination■ invest in workplace policies Supply Chain and exploitation and open opportunities for women and and programmes that open avenues for advancement and Marketing girls. of women at all levels and Practices ■ Promote and recognize women’s across all business areas, leadership in, and contributions ■ expand business relationships and encourage women to to, their communities and with women-owned enterprises, enter nontraditional job ensure sufficient representation including small businesses, and fields. of women in any community women entrepreneurs.■ ensure equal access to consultation. ■ Support gender-sensitive all company-supported ■ Use philanthropy and grants solutions to credit and lending education and training programmes to support barriers. programmes, including company commitment to literacy classes, vocational ■ ask business partners and inclusion, equality and human and information technology peers to respect the company’s rights. training. commitment to advancing 7■ Provide equal opportunities equality and inclusion. for formal and informal ■ Respect the dignity of women Transparency, networking and mentoring. in all marketing and other company materials. Measuring and■ offer opportunities to promote the business case ■ ensure that company products, Reporting for women’s empowerment services and facilities are not ■ make public the company and the positive impact of used for human trafficking and/ policies and implementation inclusion for men as well as or labour or sexual exploitation. plan for promoting gender women. equality. 6 ■ establish benchmarks that Community quantify inclusion of women at Leadership and all levels. Engagement ■ measure and report on progress, both internally ■ lead by example – showcase and externally, using data company commitment to disaggregated by sex. gender equality and women’s ■ incorporate gender markers into empowerment. ongoing reporting obligations. ■ leverage influence, alone or in partnership, to advocate for gender equality and collaborate with business partners, suppliers and community leaders to promote inclusion. womens empowerment principles/equality means business ■ 3
Principles into Practice: 3 Health, Safety Companies from around the world already furnish concrete examples of how they advance women’s empowerment. the samples that follow, matched to each of the seven and Freedom distinct Women’s empowerment Principles, showcase from Violence actions and policies to learn from and emulate; they ■ Building on a company- initiated study to determine derive from the large collection of company-submitted the economic benefits to examples entitled, Companies Leading the Way: Putting companies of employee health the Principles into Practice. awareness, a large apparel company partners with health1 2 education professionals to Leadership Equal offer trainings to employees Promotes Opportunity, on reproductive and maternal health, disease prevention and Gender Equality Inclusion and access to care.■ an international mining group Nondiscrimination ■ Recognizing the need to support working parents, headquartered in the UK, ■ to retain and attract more a Kenyan communications commissioned a resource guide qualified women, an eastern company offers free on-site day on how to reach out and engage european microfinance care and an in-house physician, women and community groups group initiated a broad- in addition to comprehensive as a major policy directive of its based data collection and medical coverage that includes business operations. analysis exercise, followed pre- and post-natal care.■ a company assessment at up with recommendations on the highest level by a global ■ two Spanish companies offer the treatment of its female accounting and consulting victims of domestic violence job employees. firm determined that the placement services specifically ■ in an effort to close gender- tailored to their needs to ease company was losing out on based pay gaps, a global transition to the workplace. business by failing to attract insurance group dedicated 1.25 and retain highly skilled female ■ a Sri lankan apparel million euros over three years. professionals and, on the basis manufacturer demonstrates of these findings, worked to ■ a large financial services its commitment to creating change company culture and company in australia offers and maintaining a safe and policies through leadership and a parental leave policy that healthy work environment – and board involvement. provides a total of two years recognition of the differential parental leave for the primary needs of its female and■ the leadership of an east care giver, which can be male employees – through asian apparel manufacturer taken flexibly, rather than a range of targeted policies implemented an integrated, on a full-time basis. and programmes, including comprehensive approach to women’s empowerment through ■ to support diversity and special care for pregnant programmes recognizing female inclusion, a multinational employees, and systematic risk employees’ accomplishments steel company established a assessments and monitoring and supporting women’s special committee comprised of its plants, processes and advancement in the company of management and women equipment. through wide-ranging workers that identifies concerns education, training and safety of female employees and in initiatives. response organizes trainings and programmes.
Company Examples 4 Education and 5 Enterprise ■ a multinational mining company with operations in Training Development, Ghana implemented a gender ■ to open opportunities for Supply Chain mainstreaming programme to encourage female employees women’s career advancement in it fields, a US-based and Marketing to assume greater responsibility multinational technology company maintains strategic Practices within the mine and connect to the local community. ■ Recognizing the expanding partnerships with women’s ■ a US-based multinational role of women entrepreneurs, a organizations in many of the apparel manufacturer awards large UK-based bank launched countries where it operates, grants to community-based specialized financial services, to promote education and organizations working to microfinance opportunities training and recognize women’s empower women in localities and business loans and also accomplishments in it. where it does business. provides an online resource ■ a large european airline center for women entrepreneurs 7 company reaches out to youth through education projects to running small and medium- sized enterprises. Transparency, break down the barriers that traditionally limit women to ■ a Swedish manufacturer Measuring and certain jobs in the industry and helps women producers of raw materials in developing Reporting men to others. ■ a mid-sized israeli fashion countries to trade directly ■ a large financial services with the manufacturer, thus company became the first of company in australia offers improving their income by its size in israel to voluntarily numerous initiatives aimed at reducing the number of disclose a Social and supporting women in business, intermediaries in the supply environmental Responsibility including an online platform chain. Report reflecting its to help australian women commitment to gender equality. ■ to make the scope of violence connect with other women in ■ a Spanish financial institution against women visible to an business internationally to share publicizes its commitment to international public, a global information, research and career equal opportunity and inclusion advertising company partnered advice. on its website and regularly with a UN organization to ■ a Chinese international develop a public awareness undergoes external equality transport company established campaign using television and diagnostics validated by an female employee committees to the internet. autonomous government body. identify and design programmes ■ a South african mining and information tailored to the 6 company includes a detailed needs and special interests of female employees. Community breakdown of employment Leadership and by gender and race per occupational level in its Engagement sustainability reporting. ■ a large international cosmetics company launched and soldUN Photo/SaNjeev KUmaR products to raise funds for community-based organizations working to end domestic violence around the world. womens empowerment principles/equality means business ■ 5
How to Make & Measure ■ are sufficient numbers of women the following suggestions align with each of the seven – 30 percent or greater – being Women’s empowerment Principles and indicate approaches recruited and interviewed? Do on how to make and measure progress. however, the most interview panels have sufficient powerful assessment tools derive from an organization’s own numbers of women participating? culture and objectives, matched with a clear measurement ■ What is the retention rate for framework. While we share common goals, the routes to get female employees by employee category and job title compared there will, by necessity, be diverse. to male employees?1 2 ■ has the company designed flex- Leadership Equal Opportunity, ible work options that incorporate the specific and different needs of Promotes Inclusion and women and men? Gender Equality Nondiscrimination ■ are there accessible channels for Define clearly company’s strategic Prominently publicize an explicit filing grievances on gender-based case for advancing gender company statement that prohibits discrimination, harassment and equality within the organization gender-based discrimination violence? and in its field. in hiring, retention policies, 3 Health, Safety, establish a high-level task force promotion, salaries and benefits. to identify priority areas, establish Design recruitment initiatives that benchmarks and monitor reach out to more women. and Freedom company progress. Review and analyze remuneration from Violence include company-wide goals of all employees by gender, Prominently publicize the for progress towards for gender employee category and job title. companys zero tolerance policy equality in job descriptions and ensure equal opportunities for and provide ongoing training. performance reviews. women to lead on important Undertake a gender sensitive assignments and task forces. inventory of health and safety Things To consider…■ is the stated commitment to Survey employees to elicit conditions. advancing equality and promoting the views of women and men Survey employees to elicit the nondiscrimination and fairness towards company policies on views of women and men on prominently featured on the equal opportunity, inclusion, health, safety and security issues. company’s website and in nondiscrimination and retention. company recruiting materials and tailor company health and safety establish and implement a policies to serve the distinctive corporate sustainability reports? confidential grievance policy concerns and needs of women■ is there a designated board-level and procedure for incidents of and men, including pregnant individual who champions the discrimination, sexual harassment women, people with hiv/aiDS, organization’s gender equality and gender-based violence. physically challenged and other policies and plans? vulnerable groups and provide the Things To consider…■ are there trainings, including for ■ is there a gender breakdown of resources to implement them. male leaders, on the importance the company’s board of directors of women’s participation and Things To consider… and top management? ■ is safety and other equipment the inclusion? ■ Does the company track and appropriate size for both women■ Does the company’s annual analyze promotions by gender, and men? report or sustainability report employee category and title? include leadership statements on ■ are there separate toilets and, if ■ are fair pay reviews conducted on necessary, changing facilities for reaching gender equality goals? a regular basis? both women and men?
Progress■ are company grounds adequately champion’ within the organization to target women-owned enterpris- es and help develop their capacity to become quality suppliers. Request from current and Craft a community impact analysis that marks the specific impacts on women and girls when establishing or expanding presence in a community. lit? potential suppliers information on Things To consider… ■ are female health care their gender and diversity policies ■ What initiatives are supported by professionals available in and include these in criteria for the company to promote equality company-provided health business selection. in the community and how many services? women and girls, men and boys Things To consider… do they reach? 4 ■ Does the company perform Education analyses of its existing supply chain to establish the baseline ■ Does the company survey participants through focus and Training number of suppliers that are groups or written comments for train and educate employees, women-owned enterprises? feedback? particularly male staff, on the ■ how many of the company’s ■ Does the company review its company’s business case for suppliers have gender equality criteria and policies that determine women’s empowerment. policies and programmes? community engagement activities offer career clinics and mentoring ■ What is the ratio of women- against results and community programmes for women’s career owned enterprises compared to feedback? development at all stages. other suppliers? ■ are women’s contributions to Promote training programmes ■ how does the company record their communities recognized and tailored for women. complaints regarding its portrayal publicized? of women and girls in marketing 7 Things To consider… and other public materials, and ■ What is the distribution between how are these concerns acted on? Transparency, women and men of training and professional development Measuring and 6 Community Reporting opportunities? ■ how many hours of training do women and men participate Leadership and Report annually, by department, on company’s gender equality in annually, analyzed by job category and title? Engagement plans and policies, using Define company community established benchmarks. ■ are the demands of employees’ engagement initiatives that Publicize findings on company’s family roles considered when empower women and girls. efforts towards inclusion and scheduling trainings and advancing women through all encourage company executives education programmes? appropriate channels and pre- to undertake community consultations with local leaders existing reporting obligations. 5 Enterprise –women and men—to establish include monitoring and evaluation strong ties and programmes that of company’s gender equality Development, benefit all community members. goals into ongoing performance Supply Chain indicators. and Marketing Things To consider… Practices ■ Does tracking along the benchmarks for advancing Prominently publicize an women demonstrate that the company is moving positively?UN Photo/Ky ChUNG executive level policy statement on the organization’s support ■ What opportunities exist for gender equality practices throughout the company for in its supply chain. review, analysis and discussion of identify a ‘women’s enterprise performance? womens empowerment principles/equality means business ■ 7
Where Women Stand: Facts and Figures Women at Risk women will become a victim of rape Spotlight on Women or attempted rape in her lifetime.7■ more people have been lifted out ■ Women experience sexual and Productivity of poverty in the last 50 years than ■ When women are afforded the in the previous 500; yet more than harassment throughout their lives. Between 40% and 50% of women equality of opportunity that is 1.2 billion still subsist on less than in the european Union reported their basic human right, the $1 per day.1 according to some some form of sexual harassment in results are striking. in 2006, The estimates, women represent 70% the workplace.8 Economist estimated that over the of the world’s poor. past decade, women’s work has■ the international Fund for ■ the cost of intimate partner contributed more to global growth agriculture and Development violence in the United States alone than China.13 (iFaD) reports that in the exceeds US$5.8 billion per year: ■ if japan raised its share of working developing world, the percentage US$4.1 billion is for direct medical and health care services, while women to american levels, it would of land owned by women is less productivity losses account for boost annual growth by 0.3% than 2%.2 nearly US$1.8 billion.9 over 20 years, according to The■ according to U.S. Government- Economist.14 sponsored research completed ■ in Canada, a 1995 study estimated ■ in 2007, Goldman Sachs reported in 2006, approximately 800,000 the annual direct costs of violence against women to be that different countries and regions people are trafficked across approximately Can$1.17 billion a of the world could dramatically in- national borders annually. year. a 2004 study in the United crease GDP simply by reducing the approximately 80% of Kingdom estimated the total direct gap in employment rates between transnational trafficking victims are and indirect costs of domestic men and women: the eurozone women and girls and up to 50% violence, including pain and could increase GDP by 13%; japan are minors.3 suffering, to be £23 billion per year by 16%; the US by 9%.15■ an estimated 72% of the world’s or £440 per person.10 33 million refugees are women and Women and Education children.4■ every minute somewhere in Women and ■ about two-thirds of the estimated 776 million adults – or 16% of the world a woman dies due to HIV/AIDS the world’s adult population – complications during pregnancy ■ the aiDS epidemic has a unique who lack basic literacy skill are and childbirth.5 impact on women, exacerbated women.16 in developing countries, by their role within society and nearly 1 out of 5 girls who enrolls Violence against their biological vulnerability to hiv in primary school does not infection – more than half of the Women estimated 33 million people living complete her primary education.■ the most common form of ■ the Women’s learning with hiv worldwide are women.11 violence experienced by women Partnership (WlP) estimates that ■ the prevalence of violence and of worldwide, for every year beyond globally is physical violence hiv/aiDS is interrelated. Women’s fourth grade that girls attend inflicted by an intimate partner. inability to negotiate safe sex and school, wages rise 20%, child on average, at least 6 out of 10 refuse unwanted sex is closely deaths drop 10% and family size women are beaten, coerced into linked to the high prevalence of drops 20%.17 sex or otherwise abused by an hiv/aiDS. Women who are beaten intimate partner in the course of by their partners are 48% more their lifetime.6 likely to be infected with hiv/■ it is estimated that, worldwide, 1 in 5 aiDS12.
Gender TermsEmpowerment Gender Equity a specific condition or situation, andempowerment means that people - Gender equity means that women and measures changes in that conditionboth women and men – can take con- men are treated fairly according to their or situation over time. the differencetrol over their lives: set their own agen- respective needs. this may include between an indicator and a statistic isdas, gain skills (or have their own skills equal treatment or treatment that is that indicators should involve compari-and knowledge recognized), increase different but considered equivalent in son with a norm. Gender-sensitive indi-self-confidence, solve problems, and terms of rights, benefits, obligations cators measure gender-related chang-develop self-reliance. it is both a proc- and opportunities. in the development es in society over time; they provideess and an outcome. context, a gender equity goal often a close look at the results of targeted requires built-in measures to compen- gender-based initiatives and actions.Gender sate for the historical and social disad-Gender refers to the array of socially vantages of women. Sex-Disaggregated Dataconstructed roles and relationships, Sex-disaggregated data can be de-personality traits, attitudes, behaviours, Gender Perspective/ fined as data that is collected and pre-values, relative power and influencethat society ascribes to the two sexes “Gender Lens” sented separately on women and men. it is quantitative statistical information a gender perspective/“gender lens”on a differential basis. Whereas bio- on the differences and inequalities be- can be defined as a focus that bringslogical sex is determined by genetic tween women and men. there is wide- a framework of analysis in order to as-and anatomical characteristics, gender spread confusion over, and misuse of, sess how women and men affect andis an acquired identity that is learned, the terms “gender-disaggregated data” are affected differently by policies,changes over time, and varies widely and “sex-disaggregated data”. Data programmes, projects and activities. itwithin and across cultures. Gender should necessarily be sex-disaggre- enables recognition that relationshipsis relational and refers not simply to gated but not gender-disaggregated between women and men can varywomen or men but to the relationship since females and males are counted depending on the context. a genderbetween them. according to their biological differ- perspective takes into account gender ence and not according to their social roles, social and economic relation-Sex ships and needs, access to resources, behaviours. the term gender-disag-Sex refers to the biological character- gregated data is frequently used, but and other constraints and opportuni-istics that define humans as female or it should be understood as sex-disag- ties imposed by society or culture,male. these sets of biological char- age, religion, and/or ethnicity on both gregated data.acteristics are not mutually exclusive women and men.as there are individuals who possess Gender Mainstreamingboth, but these characteristics gener-ally differentiate humans as females Gender Analysis Gender mainstreaming is the process of assessing the implications for wom- Gender analysis is a systematic ex-and males. en and men of any planned action, amination of the different impacts of development, policies, programmes including legislation, policies or pro-Gender Equality and legislation on women and men grammes, in any area and at all levels.Gender equality describes the concept that entails, first and foremost, col- it is a strategy for making women’s asthat all human beings, both women lecting sex-disaggregated data and well as men’s concerns and experienc-and men, are free to develop their per- gender-sensitive information about the es an integral dimension in the design,sonal abilities and make choices with- population concerned. Gender analysis implementation, monitoring and evalu-out the limitations set by stereotypes, can also include the examination of ation of policies and programmes in allrigid gender roles, or prejudices. Gen- the multiple ways in which women and political, economic and social spheres,der equality means that the different men, as social actors, engage in strat- such that inequality between womenbehaviours, aspirations and needs of egies to transform existing roles, rela- and men is not perpetuated.women and men are considered, val- tionships, and processes in their ownued and favoured equally. it does not interest and in the interest of others. SourceS: United Nations international Re-mean that women and men have to search and training institute for the advance- ment of Women (iNStRaW), 2004; UNeSCobecome the same, but that their rights,responsibilities and opportunities will Gender-Sensitive Indicator GeNia toolkit for Promoting Gender equality an indicator is a pointer. it can be a in education; and itC-ilo training module:not depend on whether they are born introduction to Gender analysis and Gender- measurement, a number, a fact, anfemale or male. Sensitive indicators Gender Campus, 2009 opinion or a perception that focuses on womens empowerment principles/equality means business ■ 9
EndnotEs bottom lines. See: http://www.globalreporting. and measurable targets accompanied by indica-IntroductIon org/CurrentPriorities/GenderandReporting/. tors for monitoring progress, with a timeline1 Gender equality has been recognized as a hu- for achievement by 2015. Growing concern a recent report (january 2010) by mcKinseyman right since the establishment of the United that the mDGs will not be met is accompanied & Company, ‘the Business of empoweringNations. by growing recognition that achievement of Women’, presents a case for why and how the gender equality is critical to achievement of allthe 1948 Universal Declaration of human Rights private sector can intensify its engagement in other mDGs. See: http://www.un.org/millen-(UDhR) and the 1976 international convenants the economic empowerment of women in devel- niumgoals/ and http://mdgs.un.org/unsd/mdg/on Civil and Political Rights (iCCPR) and eco- oping countries and emerging markets. the re- Resources/Static/Products/Progress2008/nomic, Social and Cultural Rights (iCeSCR) all port draws on insights from interviews with more mDG_Gender_Progress_Chart_2008_en.pdf.contain clear statements on the right of women than 50 leaders and experts in the private and See also, ‘the importance of Sex’, The Econo-to be free from discrimination. the Convention social sectors who focus on women’s empower- mist, april 2006; and ‘Financing Gender equalityon the elimination of all Forms of Discrimina- ment, as well as findings from a global survey is Financing Development’, UNiFem Discussiontion against Women (CeDaW), adopted by the of nearly 2,300 senior private sector executives, Paper, 2008.General assembly in 1979, obliges signatories to among others. See: http://www.mckinsey.com/undertake actions to ensure gender equality in clientservice/Social_Sector/our_practices/eco-both the private and public spheres and to elimi- nomic_Development/Knowledge_highlights/ Where Women Stand: FactS andnate traditional stereotyped ideas on the roles empowering_women.aspx. FIgureSof the sexes. importantly, governments at the 1 Women’s Funding Network. 2007. World Pov- Research by the london Business School Cen- erty Day: investing in Women – Solving the pov-1995 Fourth UN World Conference on Women tre for Women in Business found that gender erty puzzle. Poverty Statistics. available from:in Beijing, laid out specific actions set to attain parity in teams leads to more innovation, making http://www.wfnet.org/sites/wfnet.org/files/jenn/the equality and empowerment standards set by a clear business case for diversity. See ‘innova- Poverty%20Statistics.doc.CeDaW, in the Beijing Platform for action. For tive Potential: men and Women in teams, 2007,more information on legal instruments and other 2 iFaD website (fact sheet on women), accessed available at: http://www.london.edu/assets/relevant international standards of particular 27 February 2009: http://www.ifad.org/pub/ documents/facultyandresearch/innovative_Po-importance to womens human rights and gen- factsheet/women/women_e.pdf tential_Nov_2007.pdf.der equality, including CeDaW and other treatybodies, see: http://www.un.org/womenwatch/ 4 additional examples supporting the business 3 USaiD website, accessed 27 February 2009:daw/beijing/platform/plat1.htm. case for gender equality include two recent http://www.usaid.gov/our_work/cross-cutting_ studies on gender diversity and corporate programs/wid/wid_stats.html.2 employees’ and workers’ rights are addressed performance by mcKinsey and Company, con- 4 Ibid.by numerous international standards, conven- ducted in partnership with the Women’s Forumtions and recommendations of the international 5 UNiCeF. 2009. State of the World’s Children: for the economy & Society. their researchlabour organization (ilo). While ilo instru- maternal and Newborn health. available from: demonstrated the link between the presence ofments are applicable to both women and men, http://www.unicef.org/sowc09/ women in corporate management teams andthere are a number which are of specific interest companies’ organizational and financial perfor- 6 United Nations. 2008. Unite to end violencefor women workers. See the ilo Bureau for mance, suggesting that the companies where against Women Fact Sheet. available from:Gender equality and the ilo library online women are most strongly represented at board http://endviolence.un.org/docs/vaW.pdf. also,Resource Guide – Gender equality in the World or top-management level are also the com- UNiFem 2008 ‘violence against Women: factsof Work: http://www.ilo.org/public/english/sup- panies that perform best. Further research on and figures’. [http://www.unifem.org/attach-port/lib/resource/subject/gender.htm. female leadership showed that behaviors more ments/gender_issues/violence_against_women/Founded in 2000, the UN Global Compact is a often applied by women reinforce a company’s facts_figures_violence_against_women_2007.strategic policy initiative for businesses that are organizational performance on several dimen- pdf ].committed to aligning their operations and strat- sions, and will be critical to meet the expectedegies with ten universally accepted principles in challenges companies will face over the coming 7 Ibid.the areas of human rights, labour, environment years. See ‘Women matter: Gender diversity, a 8 Ibid.and anti-corruption. See: www.unglobalcom- corporate performance driver’ (2007) and ‘Wom-pact.org. en matter 2: Female leadership, a competitive 9 United Nations. 2008. Unite to end violence edge for the future’ (2008). against Women Fact Sheet. available from:in 2005 the United Nations Secretary-General http://endviolence.un.org/docs/vaW.pdfKofi annan appointed Professor john Ruggie as For research and resources of the Women lead-Special Representative on the issue of human ers and Gender Parity Programme of the World 10 Ibid.rights and transnational corporations and other economic Forum, see http://www.weforum. UNaiDS. 2008. Report on the Global aiDS 11business enterprises. the mandate includes org/en/Communities/Women%20leaders%20 epidemic. http://data.unaids.org/pub/Global-identifying and clarifying standards of corporate and%20Gender%20Parity/index.htm. For in- Report/2008/jc1510_2008_global_report_responsibility and accountability with regard to formation on the World Bank’s work on gender, pp29_62_en.pdfhuman rights. https://www.un.org/. including Gender equality as Smart economics – a World Bank Group action Plan, see: http:// 12 Global Coalition on Women and aiDS website,3 over the past 10 years, there has been an accessed 27 February 2009. http://womenan- web.worldbank.org/WBSite/eXteRNal/toP-increase in business’ attention to corporate re- daids.unaids.org/; also, UNaiDS 2008 Report iCS/eXtGeNDeR/0,,menuPK:336874~pagePK:1sponsibility and sustainability reporting through on the Global aiDS epidemic: http://data.un- 49018~piPK:149093~theSitePK:336868,00.htmla variety of mechanisms. one example is the aids.org/pub/GlobalReport/2008/jc1510_2008_UN Global Compact requirement on annual 5 the “multiplier effect” of gender equality has global_report_pp29_62_en.pdfCommunications on Progress (see: http://www. been increasingly acknowledged. Studies con-unglobalcompact.org/CoP/index.html). another tinue to show that lowering the social, economic 13 The Economist. 2006. the importance of sexexample is the global sustainability reporting and political barriers faced by women and girls (april 15). Retrieved 6 February 2009 from aca-framework developed by the Global Reporting extends education, decreases child mortality demic Search Premier database.initiative (GRi), which sets out principles and and vulnerability to hiv and aiDS. Women’s 14 Ibid.indicators that organizations can use to measure greater labour force participation reducesand report their economic, environmental poverty through increased productivity and 15 Goldman Sachs Group, inc. 2007. ‘Genderand social performance. in 2008-09, the GRi earnings. Conversely, systematic discrimination inequality, Growth and Global ageing’.worked with the international Finance Corpora- against women and girls will make it impossible 16 UNeSCo 2008. education for all, Globaltion (iFC) on a research and consultation project for many to meet the poverty and other targets monitoring Report 2009. available from: http://aimed at addressing the gap between gender of the millennium Development Goals. millen- www.unesco.org/en/education/efareport/and sustainability reporting, culminating in the nium Development Goal 3 is to promote gender reports/2009-governance/resource document, embedding Gender in equality and empower women, and is one ofSustainability Reporting, a practitioner’s guide eight mDGs drawn from the millennium Declara- 17 Women’s learning Partnership for Rights,to help organizations worldwide create op- tion, that was adopted by 189 Governments Development and Peace website, accessed 27portunities for women, adopt best practices in in 2000. the mDGs address the world’s main February 2009: http://www.learningpartnership.sustainability reporting, and improve companies’ development challenges, and have time-bound org/en/resources/facts/humanrights.
Acknowledgements the Women’s empowerment Principles initiative results from a partnership between the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNiFem) and United Nations Global Compact (UNGC), and the shared vision of UNiFem executive Director inés alberdi and UNGC office executive Director Georg Kell. the Women’s empowerment Principles partnership team consists of: joan libby-hawk, Ursula Wynhoven, Public affairs Chief, United Nations head, Policy & legal and Special Development Fund for Women (UNiFem) assistant to the executive Director, UN Global Compact office laraine mills, Partnerships and Donor Relations lauren Gula, Consultant, United Nations Development human Rights Consultant, Fund for Women (UNiFem) UN Global Compact office many individuals and groups Stephanie Quappe, emily Sims, lin lah tan, molly tschang, contributed to this effort, anne Stenhammer and tábata marchetti villares, including Barbara j. Krumsiek, linda tarr-Whelan. jim Wall and Debra Whitman. Chair, Ceo and President of Calvert Group, ltd. and others in the advisory joanne Sandler, UNiFem Bennett Freeman, Senior vice group also provided Deputy executive Director of President, Social Research and guidance, including: Programmes; moez Doraid, Policy, Calvert Group, ltd., who Radhika Balakrishnan, UNiFem Deputy executive supported UNiFem and Sumi Dhanarajan, Director, organizational and UNGC’s idea to adapt the Kathryn Dovey, Business Development Calvert Women’s Principles® manuel escudero, Services; antonie de jong, — developed in partnership Ravi Fernando, Sharon Flynn, UNiFem outreach and with UNiFem and launched in ann Goodman, julie Gorte, Business Development 2004 — and shape the heather Grady, jane Gronow, adviser; and letty Chiwara, international Women’s jhaleh hajiyeva, joe Keefe, UNiFem Cross-Regional empowerment Principles— virginia littlejohn, Programmes Chief; Sunok lee, Equality Means Business Nicola C. marchant, Sonya thimmaiah, and through a global consultation, Fiona mati, tracy Nowski, Sabina appelt from UNGC led by UNiFem and UNGC. Bruno oliveira, gave instrumental support to many people from across the luana maia oliveira, this initiative. globe, representing diverse elizabeth Pollitzer, Willa Shalit, sectors, participated as andrea Shemberg, the international labour informal advisors and gave their organization (ilo), UNGC local time and expertise, among Networks, UNiFem field offices, them: emmanuel asomba, UNGC human Rights Working yamini N. atmavilas, Group, UNiFem National amy D. augustine, liz Benham, Committees, the Global elaine Cohen, julia Días, Reporting initiative (GRi), the ian Dodds, Cecily joseph, San Francisco Department onUN Photo/Ky ChUNG elisabeth Kelan, ann lehman, the Status of Women, and BPW anu menon, Nirmala menon, international, among so many Katherine miles, Freda miriklis, others, shared valuable aditi mohapatra, maya morsy, expertise in this effort. emily murase, Publication design: Kathi Rota.
EMPOWERMENT PRINCIPLES WOMEN’S EquALITy MEANS BuSINESS“The Women’s Empowerment Principles are subtitled Equality Means Business because the full participation of women benefits business, and indeed, all of us. Informed by leading businesses’ policies and practices from different sectors and around the world, the Principles offer a practical approach to advance women, and point the way to a future that is both more prosperous and more fair for everyone.” georg Kell, executIve dIrector oF the un global compact oFFIce“As corporations are key players in the global economy they can and must play a vital role in securing and protecting womens rights and unleashing womens economic capacity. More than ever before, private sector leadership is essential. Because corporations affect capital flows, employ so many people and affect so many communities, they can exert tremendous influence and they can set an example. ” InéS alberdI, executIve dIrector oF unIFem launched in 2000, the United Nations Global Compact is both a UNiFem is the women’s fund at the United Nations. it provides policy platform and a practical framework for companies that are financial and technical assistance to innovative programmes and committed to sustainability and responsible business practices. as strategies to foster women’s empowerment and gender equality. a multi-stakeholder leadership initiative, it seeks to align business Placing the advancement of women’s human rights at the centre operations and strategies with ten universally accepted principles in of all of its efforts, UNiFem focuses on reducing feminised the areas of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption poverty; ending violence against women; reversing the spread of and to catalyze actions in support of broader UN goals. With over hiv/aiDS among women and girls; and achieving gender equality 7,000 signatories in more than 135 countries, it is the world’s largest in democratic governance in times of peace as well as war. voluntary corporate responsibility initiative. www.unifem.org <http://www.unifem.org> www.unglobalcompact.org <http://www.unglobalcompact.org> the Women’s empowerment Principles, the product of a collaboration between UNiFem and the UN Global Compact informed by an international multi-stakeholder consultation, are adapted from the Calvert Women’s Principles®. the Calvert Women’s Principles were originally developed in partnership with UNiFem and launched in 2004 as the first global corporate code of conduct focused exclusively on empowering, advancing and investing in women worldwide.