References | Africa, south of Sahara

Incentivizing the Market – Linking Women and the Private Sector: A Human Rights Based Approach


Monitoring and Evaluation, Agriculture, Natural Resource Management, Gender Equality, Market Development, Private Sector Development, Natural Resource Management

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The development objective of this study was two-fold:

(i) learn, understand and document approaches that have a positive or negative impact on the rights of women to decent work, increased social choice, voice and improved livelihoods through in-depth analysis of private sector and women farmer/employee linkages; and

(ii) develop best practices of win-win situations for effective and evidence-based strategies and modalities for linking women farmers and the agribusiness sector, based on Zambia case studies.

The overall aim of the study was to provide policy advice to the World Bank on how to operate with the private sector so that at the same time it supports women’s meaningful participation, economic empowerment and thereby gender equality and HRBA in agriculture-based interventions.

The interactions with the private sector built upon earlier public-private-partnership (PPP) approaches by the World Bank, as well as private sector CSR experiences and lessons, and endeavour to apply the latest thinking from Creating Shared Value (CSV) examples and approaches. As a consequence, the main target audience was the Bank at policy level. In addition, the process involved having dialogue on the issue at different levels – in Zambia with various stakeholders (workshop) and also, finally, in Washington. The hypothesis of the study was that Women’s capacity to benefit from greater employment opportunities, secure income and decent work is related to their level of representation and voice. As a consequence, companies will benefit from empowered women as employees and contractors etc., thus creating shared value. An integral part of the approach to this research was to search for new actionable insights on HRBA, gender equality and private sector agriculture, and to this end a thorough Literature Review was undertaken. In looking at private sector agriculture, the research took account of both formal and informal employment situations and contexts for women in that sector. In addition, within the framework of the World Bank’s Country Programme for Zambia, and the IDSP and related Nordic Trust Fund projects in particular (such as those on ICT, Community Participation), the research team endeavoured to identify and flag synergies that had the potential for mutual benefit.

Outputs included the literature review, case studies, workshops in Zambia and Washington, as well as the reports.