“Be bold, do something” Jeannette’s message to businesses on gender equality initiatives at the Responsible Business Forum

November 4, 2015

Jeannette Gurung was one of the panelists discussing strategies to end poverty in all its forms and achieving gender equality, at the Responsible Business Forum on 4 November in Singapore. 

Jeannette emphasized that the SDG Goal 5 on women’s empowerment and gender equality is a great opportunity to change the narrative from women as vulnerable groups to agents of change. She emphasized that women are integral to most supply chain especially agriculture production, “women are the world’s farmers” and they are also key consumers, almost 60-75% of household purchased decisions are made by women. This is a great opportunity and matching women’s needs to those of the business makes good business sense. Women’s empowerment is part and parcel of sustainability but the private sector still relegates it to the human rights or diversity section and not as a core business issue.

Jeannette highlighted that one of the main problems is the lack of measurements of results and focus more on inputs and outputs. She discussed how the W+ Standard can provide a verified measurement to initiatives that are impacting women’s empowerment.

Jeannette urged the private sector to be bold, set targets for women’s empowerment and seek out partners who can assist in achieving these goals.

Watch the video of the full session: