Macroeconomic policy and women's economic empowerment

This discussion paper on macroeconomic policy and women's economic empowerment is the result of a collaboration initiated in consultation with several members of the United Nations Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment. Led by UN Women, the paper includes contributions from GADN, WIEGO, the ILO, the ITUC, Open Society Foundations and ActionAid.

The paper argues that the ability to advance women’s economic empowerment (WEE) will be shaped by the overall economic environment, and macroeconomic policies play a key role in this respect.

It makes several key recommendations for gender-responsive macroeconomic policy:

  • Redefine the goals of macroeconomic policy to include the achievement of women’s economic empowerment.

  • Recognize the importance of unpaid care and domestic work, as well as informal employment in macroeconomic policymaking.

  • Use macroeconomic policy to increase the amount of decent work available to women, especially those at the bottom of the economic pyramid.

  • Maximize fiscal space for investing in women’s economic empowerment.

  • Build economic resilience and promote the income security of women workers.

  • Enable a greater collective voice for women in economic policy decision-making.