Business Environment Reform and Gender, Technical paper

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2016, DCED – 97 pages

This study on business environment reform and gender highlights gaps in the evidence basis. It provides support to donors in formulating and implementing gender-sensitive business environment reform programmes in developing countries, which contribute to a more conducive business environment that works for women as well as men. It addresses the following questions:

  • What are the factors in the business environment that have a direct and specific impact on women-owned and managed enterprises and the employment of women?
  • What are the related lessons learned from previous and existing programmes on identifying, measuring and managing gender in business environment reform programmes?

Main takeaways:

  • The greatest quantity of evidence concerns actual reforms or impacts related to childcare provision followed by substantial evidence on the positive impacts of the administration of joint land titles and women’s engagement in business associations.
  • The literature review found that any gender-sensitive business environment reform may require addressing more than the direct business environment factors that impact women’s employment and their enterprise. Equally important will be addressing socio-cultural binding constraints on women, which impact a women’s ability to engage in employment and entrepreneurship with implications for WEE and sustainable economic growth.