Four Stories for Investing in Women & Girls

Sandi Hunt, Senior Manager of Social Impact at WSII, shares four articles demonstrating why gender lens investing is vital to transforming the lives of women and girls.

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When one thinks about “investing in women and girls,” the image that comes to mind is likely to be direct investment in individuals such as women’s skill-building, girls’ empowerment, or programs that support education for girls.

And while those efforts – including many programs WSII is proud to work with – are valuable and necessary, in this spotlight we challenge you to explore another way to invest in women and girls: investing in entrepreneurs or businesses that positively affect women and girls.

Think of these links as a 15 minute primer to help you begin thinking about how gender lens investing is making a positive impact for both the investor and the investee.

Q&A: Jackie VanderBrug,” International Center for Research on Women:

This clear and concise read could double as a “Gender Lens Investing 101” guide. In this interview, Jackie VanderBrug breaks down gender lens investing and explains exactly what it means, why it’s so important, and how it can be achieved.

Applying a Gender Lens to Agriculture: Farmers, Leaders, and Hidden Influencers in the Rural Economy,” Root Capital:

Moving from broad concepts to a more specific example, Willy Foote, Founder and CEO of Root Capital applies a gender lens to their work in smallholder agricultural finance. The report gives a deeper understanding of what a gender lens looks like in action.

Investing to Advance Women,” Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment:

Eager to know more about the financial specifics? This report breaks down the investment strategies employed around Gender Lens Investing, illustrating vehicles that exist in spaces like private equity and venture capital, but also what you can do as a retail investor through something like your IRA, 401k or retirement plan.

Why invest in women?USAID:

For some memorable, cocktail-party-worthy sound bites, this catchy infographic powerfully illustrates the impact of investment in women. For example, did you know that when women have the same amount of land as men, they yield 10% more crops?

This piece was originally published in our February newsletter. For more insights like these, plus other social impact news, subscribe to the monthly newsletter and stay tuned to our upcoming work with women and girls.