The W+ Standard

The W+ Standard is a unique certification label developed by WOCAN that endorses projects that create increased social and economic benefits for women participating in economic development or environment projects, including those that provide renewable energy technologies, time and labor saving devices, forest and agriculture activities, and employment opportunities.

The W+ is thus an innovative framework to quantify and monetize the social capital created by women, to recognize and reward their contributions to sustainable environments and communities.
The W+ measures women’s empowerment in six domains: Time, Income & Assets, Health, Leadership, Education & Knowledge and Food Security. It produces quantified women-benefit units that contribute towards post 2015 Sustainability Goals (SDGs), Climate Financing or Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) targets.

Vist W+ Standard website for more detail: www,

Why a W+ Standard?

In much of the world, women comprise the majority of farmers and natural resource managers, yet are often excluded from decision-making and do not have an equal access to resources. Strengthening women’s empowerment will provide environmental, social and economic benefits for climate change adaptation and mitigation, resilience and food security.

Governments, development agencies and investors are increasingly funding women’s empowerment/ gender equality, based on women’s rights and evidence of improved project outcomes. However, what is lacking for many is a robust means of measuring these outcomes in a way that can be simply communicated.

How will the W+ Standard be Implemented?

Existing or new projects should assess how the W+ can be integrated into their project.  Any type of economic development or environment project is potentially applicable: forest, renewable energy, clean water, agriculture, etc.  Projects must plan for and measure progress in at least one of the six domains: Income and Assets, Time, Education and Knowledge, Leadership, Food Security and Health.  Once projects are defined and underway their outcomes will be monitored and measured and verified by an external auditor that has been approved by WOCAN. Organizations/projects that have obtained satisfactory results will be issued W+ certificates for a specific number of units which can then be sold to corporations, investors and individual buyers. The W+ will also provide a new revenue stream to women and their groups through benefit sharing mechanisms required by the Standard.

For more information go to W+ Website:

Technical Assistance 

WOCAN provides technical assistance in building capacities for gender and women’s empowerment programming and monitoring and evaluation, and can guide Project Developers in each step of the W+ standard application. Project Developers will gain knowledge and expertise on how to measure women’s empowerment using the W+ Standard as a result of receiving this assistance.



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June 18, 2014
As the member of the Policy Advisory Committee (PAC) for the FAO Project for Ecosystem Services in Agriculture (IES), Jeannette Gurung,attended thea meeting where the FAO project team members, donor representatives and 11 other PAC members from governments, international organizations and NGOs and the private sector discussed key obstacles and opportunities for incentivizing PES by...
June 9, 2014
WOCAN is re-elected to the Global Gender and Climate Alliance (GGCA) Steering Committee (SC) for July 2014 to June 2016. Vera P. Weill-Halle, Chairperson of WOCAN Board of Directors, will continue as our representative. WOCAN would like to congratulate the other two newly elected GGCA Steering Committee members: Population Action International (PAI) and RECOFTC – The Center for People and...
June 9, 2014
The UN-REDD Program newsletter featured the REDD+ Stakeholdermeeting organized as part of a Joint Regional Initiative started a year ago by the UN-REDD Programme, USAID-funded Lowering Emissions in Asia’s Forests (LEAF) and Women Organizing for Change in Agriculture and Natural Resource Management (WOCAN) to help guide countries in the region on the importance of integrating gender...
May 18, 2014
UNESCAP, in collaboration with civil society partners, convened the Asia-Pacific Civil Society Forum on Sustainable Development in Bangkok on 15-17 May, as a preparatory event for the Asia Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development (APFSD) scheduled on 19-21 May. The Forum brought together civil society organizations from different sectors and countries to explore common ground and actions, to...
May 30, 2014
Jeannette attended the Gender and REDD+ Learning Exchange organized by IUCN and USAID in collaboration with WEDO, the UN-REDD programme and REDD+ SESin Washington DC from 13-15 May 2014, along with about 45 others from around the world. The objective of the event was to increase the understanding of gender considerations relevant to REDD+ through exchange of on the ground examples from...
May 29, 2014
WOCAN has completed the first steps of the implementation of the first pilot project for the W+ Standard, within a biogas project in Sindhuli and Kavre districts in Nepal, in collaboration with the Alternative Energy Promotion Center (AEPC), HIMAWANTI and ASTHA (two federations of women’s groups). During this Phase, the W+ Team has conducted the following activities required by the W+...
In programs: The W+ Standard
May 20, 2014
Jeannette Gurung, discussed WOCAN and the W+ Standard at a talk program organized by World Bank's Gender and Rural Development Thematic Group (GENRD) in Washington, DC, USA on 12 May. The session is chaired by Eija Pehu, Science Adviser and Gender Anchor, AES, World Bank and W+ Advisory Council Member. The discussants are Klas Sander, Senior Environmental Economist, LCSEN, World Bank;...
In programs: The W+ Standard
May 27, 2014
Maris Gavino, WOCAN Liaison in Rome, joined the Civil Society Mechanism (CSM) preparatory meeting on 17-18 May and the negotiation of the Principles for Responsible Investments in Agriculture and Food Systems (RAI) from 19 to 24 May. The 6-day negotiations worked intensively on the 6 Principle out of 10, also the Roles, Responsibilities, and Application Section still needs to be discussed...
May 9, 2014
Ingo Puhl, Managing Partner of the South Pole Group, hosted the Women in Agriculture and NRM (WARM) meeting on 7 May in Bangkok, Thailand.WARM is an informal gathering initiated by WOCAN to share, learn and build a network of individuals who are interested in issues related to Women in Agriculture and Natural Resource Management (WARM) (with men warmly welcomed). The 10 participants...
In programs: Innovation Incubator
November 15, 2013
On Oct, Institute of Environment and Water Management (IEWM) with the support from WOCAN organized the two Women Leadership Circle in Agriculture & NRM (WLCAN) meetings in Kitale and Kitui County, Kenya. The objective of the meeting was to strengthen the leadership role of women farmers in Agriculture and Natural Resource Management in the face of a changing climate. The two day meeting...


Wocan organized the inception meeting for WLC in South Africa on 28 May, 2012.The major purpose of this meeting was to convene a small team to for a brainstorming session on how the Women’s Leadership Circles could be established in South Africa.
WOCAN has recently completed curriculum development workshop on May 14-18, 2012 in Bangkok, Thailand that was attended by some of WOCAN’s Core Associate Trainers of Asia. The workshop was a part of IFAD supported project “Capacity Building for Women’s Leadership in Farmer Producer Organizations in the Asia/Pacific Region.” The main goal of the workshop was to develop...
Training on Gender Analysis for staff of ICRAF (World Agroforestry Center), Kunming, China. May 28-June 4 by WOCAN Trainers Barun Gurung and Kalpana Giri
In programs:
Women’s Leadership in a Green Economy: Valuing Women’s Contributions with Abidah Setyowati, Cecile Ndjebet, Meena Bilgi, Jeannette Gurung and Ministry of Forest, Indonesia Evidence from Indonesia, Cameroon and India presented in the panel demonstrates that empowering women as resource managers and entrepreneurs presents a powerful strategy that can be used to address both local and...
Presentation of WOCAN’s Reframing Leadership for Gender Equality for Agriculture and NRM Course. A promotional video was presented to 25 organizations in Pretoria, South Africa, by members of WOCAN’s Training Team Sikhalazo Dube, Sefora Masia, Colletah Chitsike and the Executive Director, Jeannette Gurung.
In programs:
WOCAN Coordinator Sefora Masia is organizing the first meeting of the South Africa Women’s Leadership Circle to be held on May 18, 2012 in Pretoria. The Executive Director, Jeannette Gurung , women farmers, WOCAN members and government and non-government representatives will attend.
In programs:
WOCAN Core Team members Annabell Waitu and Wangu Mutua will convene a Women’s Leadership Circle Inception meeting on May 14 in Nairobi, Kenya.
WOCAN Core Team Trainers Phanlany Khamphoui and Abidah Setyowati will conduct a gender analysis with PACT Cambodia staff in the Oddar Meanchey Project.
In programs:
Dibya Gurung, WOCAN Nepal Coordinator, will participate in the AWID International Forum, April 19 to 22, 2012 in Istanbul, Turkey. Dibya will share WOCAN's experience with Women's Leadership Circles in Nepal and elsewhere as a strategy for advocacy for food security in a panel with OXFAM on "Women Transforming the Food System and Advancing Their Rights: sharing practical...
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. WOCAN is one of the organizing members of the Women Major Group. It will be sending a delegation to Brazil. More information can be found at


The report includes highlights of the various sessions and group discussions, as well as participant priorities for collaboration under the Asia LEDS Partnership in 2015. Example priority work areas suggested for further assessment include: Tools for assessing economic growth and employment benefits of LEDS; Training on developing and financing low emission land use plans in the AFOLU...
The infographic describes the links between food security, gender and climate change. It gives the analytical framework of the Gender and climate change research in agriculture and food security for rural development (FAO and CCAFS 2012, second edition 2013), available Related links;...
Farming First and The United NationsFood and Agriculture Organisation (FAO)have jointly launched a new interactive infographic entitled “The Female Face of Farming”. The infographic is a striking visual representation of the statistics that underlie the urgent need to invest in rural women.You can view the full infographic
WOCAN in collaboration withRECOFTC- The Center for People and Forestshas developed an infographic to highlight the discussions and recommendations of theRegional Dialogue on Women’s Inclusion in Landscape Management,held on 7-9 October 2014 in Chiang Mai, Thailand. The dialogue brought together 40 participants (33 women and seven men) from ten countries (eight from...
This report summarizes the discussions and outcomes of the "Regional Dialogue on Women's Inclusion in Landscape Management in Asia", held on 7-9 Oct in Chiang Mai, Thailand.Women Organizing for Change in Agriculture and Natural Resource Management (WOCAN) in partnership with The Center for People and Forests (RECOFTC) and The Forests Dialogue, and with the support of the...
EcoAgriculture Partners and Cornell University: Abigail Hart, Chris Planicka, Lee Gross, Louise E. Buck Landscape labeling is a strategy that practitioners of integrated landscape management can use to market their products. A landscape label captures and brands the social and ecological assets, growing conditions, soil, topography, and management practices of producers in a landscape....
SNV:Richard McNally, Adrian Enright and Hans Smit This paper highlights the need to betterunderstand the relationship betweenagriculture and forests; in particular theneed to better understand where andhow agriculture is produced, as well asthe types of activities that need to beintroduced to support this sector. Given thegrowing commitments from...
SNV:Richard McNally, Adrian Enright and Hans Smit This paper highlights the need to betterunderstand the relationship betweenagriculture and forests; in particular theneed to better understand where andhow agriculture is produced, as well asthe types of activities that need to beintroduced to support this sector. Given thegrowing commitments from...
Over three days, 13-15 May 2014, in Washington,D.C., the United States Agency for InternationalDevelopment (USAID) joined with the GlobalGender Office (GGO) of the International Unionfor Conservation of Nature (IUCN) to organize andhost a technical workshop on gender and reducingemissions from deforestation and forest degradation(REDD+). A learning...
Charting the rationale and the actions necessary to ensure ground-breaking change, the flagship UN study asserts that any comprehensive sustainable development pathway cannot be achieved without an explicit commitment to gender equality, women’s rights and their empowerment. Coming on the heels of the UN Secretary-General’s Climate Summit in September, the World Survey 2014 provides...