G7 leaders must prioritise women’s empowerment at this year’s Summit

Fundamental changes must be made at a global level and across societies to dismantle the gendered barriers holding back women entrepreneurs.

Next week, world leaders from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and the US will gather in the Bavarian Alps to attend the G7 Summit. The summit brings together the world’s most advanced economies to tackle global issues and discuss plans of action. The G7 nations have a great amount of influence on countries around the world, so the decisions they make at the Summit will affect us all.  

Fundamental changes must be made at a global level and across societies to dismantle the gendered barriers holding back women entrepreneurs. As the G7 Summit approaches, we call upon participating nations to make concrete commitments to: 

1. Promote women’s entrepreneurship and economic empowerment 

Women speak at a lunch event

We recommend… 

  • Formulating an updated policy framework with incentives for the development and promotion of women’s entrepreneurship and economic empowerment, including an increase in current spending and additional funding for addressing barriers to women’s economic empowerment such as gender stereotypes and women’s disproportionate unpaid care work. 
  • Putting women entrepreneurs at the forefront of policy and COVID-19 recovery commitments and recognising the systemic challenges they face and the disproportionate impact of the pandemic on their businesses.  
  • Supporting initiatives that promote women entrepreneurs’ access to skills and education as well as strengthening their agency and leadership.

2. Tackle gender stereotypes affecting women’s economic empowerment and entrepreneurship

Mampho Sotshongaye, founder of Golden Rewards 1981, and HerVenture user works with a traffic sign at her company

We recommend… 

  • Increasing the understanding of how gender stereotypes shape women’s lives, including entrepreneurship, economic participation, division of unpaid care work, and empowerment.   
  • Raising awareness about how gender stereotypes shape the realisation of rights and equal opportunities, such as those related to economic participation and entrepreneurship.  
  • Taking concrete measures to prevent and eliminate gender stereotypes and their negative impacts, both in private and public spheres.  

3. Recognise and redistribute unpaid care work

Neeta Mohan, jam producer and Ekta alumna

We recommend… 

  • Addressing the unpaid care work burden disproportionately impacting women and ensuring that macroeconomic policies address the gender inequalities in unpaid care and other domestic responsibilities. Ensuring that the importance of unpaid care work and its disproportionate shouldering by women is recognised in the final elaborations of the G7. 
  • Recognising and redistributing women’s disproportionate share of unpaid care work through adoption of gender-transformative policies, social protection systems, public care services and investment in appropriate technology and infrastructure.  
  • Supporting campaigns and programmes that seek to challenge stereotypes relating to domestic division of labour and unpaid care work and promoting progressive and diverse participation and roles for women and men in both private and public spheres.  
  • Building women’s and girls’ leadership in economies, societies, politics and the workplace. This means including women and girls in decision-making and leadership positions and investing in local women-led and women’s rights organisations which often focus on supporting the most marginalised, and provide essential, but under-resourced services that are critical if women and girls are to realise their rights and / or recover from crises. 

We have also been involved in  the Women 7 (W7) process, which brings together a group of civil society organizations to promote proposals on gender equality and women’s rights within the G7 process. The W7 communique outlines additional recommendations and plans for implementation.

We refuse to wait the 268 years it’s forecasted to take for women to have economic equality. Gender equality is a fundamental human right. It’s time for G7 leaders to take action to address gender inequalities and advance women’s entrepreneurship.  


Read our full policy recommendations here.

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