New York City, September 22, 2014—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, today announced the launch of a private sector partnership that will improve employment opportunities for more than 300,000 women over the next two years. The initiative was announced by World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim at the 2014 Annual Meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative in New York City.
The She Works partnership brings together 10 leading companies that have pledged to implement measures proven to enhance women’s employment opportunities—such as mentorship programs, flexible working arrangements, and leadership training to increase diversity in management. Participating companies include Belcorp, Care.com, The Coca-Cola Company, EY, Gap Inc., Intel Corporation, Kuwait Energy, Odebrecht Group, Ooredoo Group, and Zulekha Hospitals.
“Investing in women’s employment is not only the right thing to do—it’s also essential for business,” said Kim. “Companies that learn to effectively develop and retain women employees will gain a huge competitive advantage.”
Working with key partners, including the EDGE Certified Foundation, International Labour Organization, and the UN Global Compact, IFC will identify best practices and develop practical approaches that companies can implement to improve gender equality in the workplace. Better jobs for women leads to better development outcomes, because women spend more on children’s health, education, and nutrition.
Despite evidence that women’s employment is vital to driving economic growth and development, women face persistent barriers in labor markets and are more concentrated in the informal economy—rather than in salaried or wage work.
The private sector, which accounts for nine out of 10 jobs in developing countries, plays a critical role in creating better employment opportunities for women. She Works is part of IFC’s broader effort to help companies address gender gaps in employment, and thereby drive gains in productivity, competitiveness, and innovation.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector. Working with private enterprises in about 100 countries, we use our capital, expertise, and influence to help eliminate extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. In FY14, we provided more than $22 billion in financing to improve lives in developing countries and tackle the most urgent challenges of development. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
About the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI)
Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI)—an initiative of the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation—convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. CGI Annual Meetings have brought together more than 180 heads of state, 20 Nobel Prize laureates, and hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations and NGOs, major philanthropists, and members of the media. To date, members of the CGI community have made more than 2,800 commitments, which are already improving the lives of more than 430 million people in over 180 countries. When fully funded and implemented, these commitments will be valued at $103 billion.
CGI also convenes CGI America, a meeting focused on collaborative solutions to economic recovery in the United States, and CGI University (CGI U), which brings together undergraduate and graduate students to address pressing challenges in their community or around the world. For more information, visit clintonglobalinitiative.org and follow us on Twitter @ClintonGlobal and Facebook at facebook.com/clintonglobalinitiative.