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U.S. Government Launches First-Ever Interagency Strategy to Advance Women’s Economic Security Globally

On Wednesday, January 4, 2023, U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken announced the launch of the first-ever U.S. Strategy on Global Women’s Economic Security

The launch event, hosted by the U.S. Department of State, the White House Gender Policy Council (GPC), and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), brought together U.S. government representatives and gender equality experts to discuss the Strategy’s implementation. Speakers included USAID Administrator Samantha Power, the State Department’s Senior Official and acting Ambassador-at-Large for the Office of Global Women’s Issues Kat Fotovat, and Assistant to the President and Director of the White House GPC Jennifer Klein.

The new whole-of-government Strategy on Global Women’s Economic Security aims to streamline and mobilize U.S. foreign policy, international programming, and development assistance, trade policy and promotion, private sector development, and partnerships to ensure women’s full and equitable participation in the global economy.

“Promoting women’s economic security is the right thing to do, but it’s also the smart and necessary thing to do,” said Secretary Blinken at the Strategy’s launch event. “When everyone can contribute to their full potential, our economies are more prosperous, our societies are more full of opportunity, our nations are more peaceful, and everyone is better off.”

The Strategy on Global Women’s Economic Security is a product of close collaboration among 12 U.S. departments and agencies as well as consultations with over 200 civil society actors and external stakeholders from 30 countries. 

Banyan Global contributed to the collaborative Strategy development process by facilitating USAID’s internal and external consultations, reaching over 100 participants representing a wide variety of institutions, sectors, and regions. Banyan Global then led a validation workshop with USAID staff to confirm the consultation findings. 

Additionally, Banyan Global analyzed consultative findings from across U.S. Government departments and agencies, which, in turn, informed our design of an interagency workshop. During the workshop, Banyan Global led 38 representatives from across the U.S. Government through a prioritization process within the Strategy’s four core lines of effort: 

  1. Promote Economic Competitiveness and Reduce Wage Gaps through Well-Paying, Quality Jobs;
  2. Advance Care Infrastructure and Value Domestic Work;
  3. Promote Entrepreneurship and Financial and Digital Inclusion, including through Trade and Investment; and
  4. Dismantle Systemic Barriers to Women’s Equitable Participation in the Economy.

“This first-ever Strategy is grounded in the wealth of evidence that advancing women’s participation promotes economic prosperity and stability, and it addresses the significant persisting gender gaps in economic security,” Jennifer Klein explained. “The Strategy will advance women’s economic participation as a key strategic objective of our domestic and foreign policy.”

The launch of the Strategy on Global Women’s Economic Security comes at the same time as the release of a new fact sheet about the Gender Equity and Equality Action (GEEA) Fund, highlighting its work to date and demonstrating the U.S. Government’s commitment to women’s economic security globally. The GEEA Fund invests in partners around the world, prioritizing programs that address the disproportionate impact of COVID-19, climate change, conflict, and crisis on women and girls. 

Watch the livestream U.S. Strategy on Global Women’s Economic Security launch event on the U.S. Department of State’s YouTube channel

Read the complete U.S. Strategy on Global Women’s Economic Security.

Read the Gender Equity and Equality Action (GEEA) Fund Fact Sheet

Learn more about Banyan Global’s work facilitating thought leadership for women’s economic empowerment.