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Bangkok | Mar-17 | Women and their role in Smart villages

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Bangkok | Mar-17 | Women and their role in Smart villages

  1. 1. Women and their role in Smart villages DR SOHASINI SUDTHARALINGAM 8TH MARCH 2017
  2. 2. Content Contribution of women to the economy Smart village: What does it look like? Innovations that make villages ‘smart-er’ and the role that women can and should play What needs to change? Pathway of change Discussions and Q&A UN High Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment’s LEAVE NO ONE BEHIND paper “Urges government to provide adequate support to enable women to work productively by investing in quality public care services, decent care jobs, social protection and provide safe access to economic opportunities”
  3. 3. Contribution of women to the economy • In the next decade nearly 1 billion women are likely to enter the global labour force. • Increasing female employment would increase GDP significantly in countries like India and Egypt, where female labour-participation rates are below 30%. Source: The Economist
  4. 4. Smart village: What does it look like? •Meeting basic needs - energy, water, food, access to good quality health services and education •Connectivity and access - physical infrastructure and ICT for access to information and markets •High value economic activities and job opportunities - producing high-value added agricultural and rural industry products •Collective decision and action - well managed resources, by pooling together production, i.e. bigger distributed generation, combined agricultural efforts will allow better access to financing, improved efficiency and reduction in unit cost of production, and better health (through displaced use of coal fired cooking stove) •Sustainable development – managing the environment for current and future generations Outcome: Highly productive villages  sufficient job opportunities  better standard of living  reducing migration to cities.
  5. 5. Energy sector – role of women? (1 of 3) Role of women in the ENERGY sector: Entrepreneurs and providers of sustainable energy solutions at the community level and acting as agents of change, whilst economically empowering themselves. Example: M-KOPA (East Africa) M-KOPE "pay-as-you-go" energy for off-grid customers. M-KOPA has connected more than 200,000 homes in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda to solar power, and is now adding over 500 new homes each day. M-KOPA employs over 650 full time staff. Women play an important role in dissemination of sustainable energy solutions given their network across villages. Energy is a catalyst for the development of multiple sectors •Productive activities (agriculture, industry, small and medium businesses) •Basic services (education, health, water) •Usage of ‘smart-er’ infrastructure (transport, ICT)
  6. 6. Water and sanitation– role of women? (2 of 3) Role of women in the WATER and SANITATION sector: Entrepreneurs selling clean/treated water in the community and investing the funds in health and children’s education. Example: WaterSHED’s (Cambodia) WaterSHED builds the market for water, sanitation and hygiene products to give consumers easy access to clean water, toilets and a place to wash their hands. Water, sanitation and hygiene products can be “marketed by women, to women” and will adapt marketing tools to be more appealing to female consumers. WaterSHED has already recruited more than 175 rural Cambodian women. Water and sanitation are basic needs and essential for health and productivity •One estimate suggests that some 40 billion hours a year, are spent collecting water in sub-Saharan Africa – equal to a year’s labour for the entire workforce of France (UNDP, 2006). •Water and sanitation sector can contribute to redressing inequality and can impact positively on the social, political and economic position of women.
  7. 7. Agriculture – role of women?(3 of 3) Role of women in the AGRICULTURE: Women farmers empowered with knowledge and information to make effective business decisions. Example: CEAPRED (Nepal) CEAPRED piloted climate smart villages to educate smallholder farmers, especially women, about climate-smart farming techniques and help them access weather and vegetable price information using mobile phones. “I am already saving money by switching from chemical to homemade pesticide and using waste water from cleaning on vegetables planted in my backyard” – Female farmer Climate smart agriculture could drive productivity •Women - especially in developing countries — are often more exposed to the risks of extreme weather than men, because they can be less mobile and lack access to traditional means of communication according to the UN’s World Meteorological Organization (WMO). •Climate-smart farming techniques and help them access weather and vegetable price information using mobile phones.
  8. 8. Sectoral innovation ns that will create disruption New energy models •Rooftop solar (Pay As You Go): will offer solar panels and build digitally linked resources •Anchor tenant (Pay As You Go): A major customer funds the microgrid and excess power is available for surrounding community •Fully integrate both models: Fully integrated 'digital' microgrids - Algorithms learn to match supply and demand and integrate battery storage Financing/payment •Enabling payments through mobile phones •Smart metering: Better access to data and improvement in payment (utility, services) •Smart models of banking/micro-finances for small businesses Improvement in data collection/ information transfer •New mapping approaches make consumers locatable including those in the Last Mile •Usage of drones to transport blood supplies to remote areas (Rwanda) •Usage of drones to collect data in inaccessible areas •Mobile health services (need to be supported by sufficiently skilled labour force) Education/ skills improvement •Digital/ICT skills to be improved •Satellite internet in rural areas to provide access to knowledge •Skilled labour force (engineers, teachers, healthcare professionals)
  9. 9. What needs to change? ACCESS To: • Education and knowledge (suitable/practical know-hows) • Energy as an enabler • Finances, digital and property assets • Mentors/role models ENABLING ENVIRONMENT • Perception of the role of women in family and society (social norms) • Better laws and legal protection for access to assets, access to jobs and to hinder harmful traditions • Businesses unbiased in hiring women • Recognition of unpaid household work
  10. 10. Pathway of change Meeting basic needs: Needs and Vulnerabilities Going beyond basic: Assets, Capabilities and Opportunities Structural Transformation Includes the assessment of and action to meet practical needs and vulnerabilities of marginalised groups. This is likely to involved consultation with groups and an inclusive approach to ensure that everyone’s voice is heard Addresses strategic gender and inclusion issues beyond practical needs, so that individuals are empowered to make active choices, and build their assets, capabilities and opportunities. Addresses broader structural relations and power structures, often through collective action and influencing the enabling environment. This often gets at the root cause of inequality, and may address norms and systems that exacerbate this
  11. 11. Discussions and Q&A  Barriers to involving women and marginalised community in economic activities Entry points for women and marginalised community to support the creation of inclusive smart villages  Simple steps that we can take in the short term (current visible opportunities) and medium term
  12. 12. Thank you (Kòrp-kOOn)! Dr Sohasini Sudtharalingam International Development Consultant, UK sohasini@gmail.com