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.

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: www.wplus.org

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.

More Detail: 

 
December 14, 2015
Excerpt from the article:"Are Women The Key To Solving Climate Change?" written by Lauren Zanolli forFastCompany. "’Adaptation’ is where everyone wants to put women," says Jeanette Gurung, Executive Director of Women Organizing for Change in Agriculture and Natural Resource Management (WOCAN). "At best women are associated with small-scale...
In programs: The W+ Standard
December 8, 2015
IUCN Global Gender Office launched a new publication: Roots for the Future: The Landscape and Way Forward on Gender and Climate Change, during the Gender Day at COP21, which featured the application of W+ Standard in Indonesia as one of the case studies of gender-responsive initiative. The publication is acompilation of the latest information and evidence on gender and climate...
In programs: The W+ Standard
December 8, 2015
By Jeannette Gurung, Published inOutreach- A multi-stakeholder publication on climate change and sustainable development on Dec 8, Gender Day at COP21 Women’s agency and leadership play a critical and often unrecognised role in climate responses. This is reflected in their knowledge and practices in sustainable natural resources management, in responding to climate-related crises,...
In programs:
November 12, 2015
Jeannette Gurung was one of the speakers on the roundtable discussion on ‘Investing in women's economic resilience and social wellbeing : Rethinking the role of private sector development in Africa’ organized by the Foreign Policy Centre (FPC), supported by Nestle. This was the third event in the series of six FPC discussions and held on 4 November in the UK House of Parliament....
In programs: The W+ Standard
November 12, 2015
Vera Weill-Hallie, Chair of WOCAN Board, was one of the speakers at the 42nd Committee on World Food Security (CFS) side event titled Climate-Smart Agriculture (CSA) and Gender — Evidence for Equitable, Food Secure and Sustainable Agriculture. The event was organized by the World Bank, GGCA, IFAD and FAO and was held on 12 October in Rome. The discussion focused on the lessons learned from...
November 26, 2015
MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN WOMEN’S LIVES IN NEPAL What would you do with an extra 2.2 hours a day? When women in villagesof Nepal replaced their wood-generated stoves with biogas digesters,they reduced their daily workload by 2.2 hours.This iswhat theW+ Standard, created byWOCAN* (a global women-led membership organization dedicated to women's empowerment...
October 9, 2015
Jeannette Gurung, and WOCAN Board Members Lee West and Candice Eggerss, attended the SOCAP (Social Capital Markets) from 6-9 Oct. in San Francisco. SOCAP is the world's leading conference on impact investing and social enterprise.During the "Gender Lens Champions" breakfast session, Jackie VanderBrug of Criterion Institute, mentioned the W+ Standard as one of the...
In programs: The W+ Standard
October 29, 2015
We collected 10 reflections to celebrate the 10 years of WOCAN’s efforts to integrate gender into agriculture and natural resource management institutions, empower women and promote gender equality, and look forward to new and exciting opportunities in the next decade. Watch the highlights of the reflections: Check out all the reflection:10 reflections...
In programs:
October 16, 2015
Jeannette Gurung attended the Expert Group Meeting on Gender and Climate Policy and Action to discuss the current status, identify good practices and practical approaches to the implementation of gender-related mandates and decisions in UNFCCC processes and mechanisms. The meeting was organized by theUN-Women, UN DESA and the UNFCCC secretariat from 14 - 16 Oct., in Bonn, Germany....
October 12, 2015
Nisha Onta, Knowledge Management Coordinator, and Sunitha Bisan, WOCAN Core Associate, presented the W+ Standard at the NGO marketplace during the CSR Asia Summit on 7-8 October in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The Summit focused on sustainable business strategies which bring value to businesses, communities and society. 429 delegates from across 28 countries attended the Summit representing businesses...
In programs: The W+ Standard

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Jan
12
To support its goal of women’s leadership development, WOCAN provides leadership training to project partners, members and clients. WOCAN’s course, Reframing Leadership for Women and Men for Gender Equality, builds the capacities of leaders working at different levels ranging from rural cooperatives/producer groups to agricultural and natural resources institutions, national...
Dec
1
We are pleased to announce the release of WOCAN's W+ Standard Version 1.1 and requirements for the First Public Consultation, beginning December 2, 2014. To accelerate women’s empowerment, WOCAN has created the W+ Standard to measure positive impacts to women’s social and economic empowerment and provides companies, governments and individuals a way to...
In programs: The W+ Standard
Dec
1
Barun Gurung, WOCAN Lead Trainer, and Phanlany Khampoui, WOCAN Core Associate, is conducting the M&E in Lao PDR for the Capacity Building for Women’s Leadership in Famer Producer Organizations in Asia and the Pacific Region Project on 1-11 Dec. They will meet with Mrs. Vilayphone Vorlaphim, Deputy Director General of the Permanent Secretary’ s Office, Ms. Sisomphet Souvanthalisith...
In programs:
Dec
2
Jeannette Gurung will attend the regional launch of the USAIDOnline Sourcebook for Integrating Gender in Climate Change Adaptation Projects, on 2 Dec in Bangkok, Thailand.USAID is launching this online sourcebook to help ensure that gender considerations and women’s empowerment are incorporated into large-scale climate change adaptation projects. Using the sourcebook can...
Nov
25
Linda Mossop, WOCAN South Africa Coordinator, is organizing the WLCAN (Women Leadership Circle in Agriculture and NRM) on 25th November in Pretorial, South Africa.
Nov
20
Meena Bilgi, Core Associate and Nisha Onta, Knowledge Management Coordinator, will attend the Side Event of theAsia Pacific Regional Conference Beijing +20 titled "Challenges and opportunities towards rural women’s empowerment: agrarian transformations and the changing role of women in agriculture and food systems". The event is organized by UNWomen and FAO and being held in...
Oct
1
Nisha Onta, Knowledge Management Coordinator of WOCAN, will be discussing the W+ Standard on the Session facilitated by UNWomen on "Gender Sensitive Adapatation", during the4th Asia-Pacific Climate Change Adaptation Forumon 1-3 October in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.The Adaptation Forum 2014 will focus on adaptation actors and how they collaborate to form partnerships and...
In programs: The W+ Standard
Nov
11
Jeannette will be speaking on the session titled “Untapped potential for monetizing and measuring impacts for sustainable development projects” during theInnovative Finance for Sustainable Development Conference(#IFSD),hosted by Nexus Carbon for Development and The Gold Standard on 11-12 Nov at the National Library in Singapore. This conference will be key in pushing...
In programs: The W+ Standard
Nov
14
On 14-16 November, 2014, Asia Pacific civil society organisations (CSOs) will gather in Bangkok, Thailand to develop a collective strategy on the priority issues for the Asia Pacific region on the Beijing +20 review processes. You can apply to attend and to have a workshop at the forum via theonline application formor download the form and send it toapplication.csoforumb20@gmail....
Oct
13
Jeannette will attend theregional workshop on the UN-REDD Programme 2016-2020 strategic framework on 13- 14 Octoberbeing held in Bangkok, Thailand.The workshops are organized jointly by the Secretariat and the regional UN-REDD country office teams, with lead support from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The aim of the workshop is to conduct robust...

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Land statistics disaggregated by sex are useful for showcasing the disparities in land rights between women and men. They also provide a sense of women’s economic empowerment in agriculture. Unfortunately, land statistics are not always used properly. This infographic tries tounderstand and interpret better the different land statistics available in FAO’s Gender and Land Rights...
This working paper synthesizes knowledge within CGIAR on adaptation measures inagricultural systems, for the benefit of parties and observers preparing submissions to theUNFCCC SBSTA. Experience from CGIAR and partners indicate that adaptation measurescovering policy, technological, financial, institutional, and research interventions are beingtested and applied in...
The initial purpose of this assessment was to identify good practices, lessons learned and key entry points for increasing women‘s participation in and benefit from REDD+ activities, as well as opportunities to advance gender equality through this sector. This study aimed to provide recommendations on how future REDD+ initiatives in Asia, including USAID/RDMA‘s (Regional Development...
The Women and Gender Constituency published the ‘Gender-Just Solutions’ publication, highlighting over 30 technical, non-technical and transformative solutions for climate action. The Gender Just Climate Solutions shown in this publication are aimed at making gender responsive and equitable solutions visible and central to just climate action. Gender Just Climate Solutions...
In programs: The W+ Standard
This toolkit is an initiative of the UNDP Gender Team and the UNDP–UNEP Global Support Programme. It is designedto strengthen the capacity of national government staff and assist them in integrating gender equality into thedevelopment of National Communications (NCs). It is recognized that NC reporting processes can be a meaningfulentry point for training, awareness-...
In programs: The W+ Standard
This paper introduces a model of gender inequality and economic growth that focuses on thedetermination of women’s time allocation among market production, home production, child rearing,and child education. The theoretical model is based on Agénor (2012), but differs in several importantdimensions. The model is calibrated using microlevel data of Asian economies,...
In programs: The W+ Standard
This working paper aims to help companies build effective strategies in women's economic empowerment by applying a holistic and integrated approach: "Holistic" in considering the broader conditions necessary for women's advancement and "integrated" in leveraging the full set of business assets a company can deploy. This apprach builds on growing body of evidence...
In programs: The W+ Standard
While there is mounting evidence on the linkbetween promoting women’s equality and economic empowerment and other development outcomes,such as sustainable agricultural and economic growth,gender issues are being inadequately reflected inagricultural policy strategies and programs. At thesame time, a changing climate means that there isa shrinking window...
In programs: The W+ Standard
This is the report of the Expert Group Meeting (EGM) organized byUN Women, the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat (UN DESA), and the secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC secretariat) from 14 – 16 October 2015, in Bonn, Germany. The EGM brought together representatives from existing climate finance and...

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