Gender equality is ‘smart economics’, says World Bank

19 Sep

The gender gap is hampering economic growth, and even though women have made progress through education, there are still not enough opportunities in the workplace, according to the World Bank.

Closing that gap and making moves towards gender equality is not just a goal in itself, but because it is’smart economics’, it says in its World Development Report (WDR) 2012: Gender Equality and Development.

While girls are making progress in education in developed countries, but countries need to include the gender gap perspective in their development policies because it makes good economic sense to tap into the skills and expertise of women.

WDR 2012 recommends four things: reducing the mortality of girls and gender gaps in education; closing earning and productivity gaps; giving women a greater voice within households and societies; limiting gender equality across generations.

“Blocking women and girls from getting the skills and earnings to succeed in a globalised world is not only wrong, but also economically harmful,” said Justin Yifu Lin, World Bank Chief Economist and Senior Vice-President, Development Economics. “Sharing the fruits of growth and globalization equally between men and women is essential to meeting key development goals.”

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