From the gender breakfast to investor working sessions and social enterprise case studies, SOCAP has long championed a gender lens in finance and entrepreneurship. This year let’s widen the aperture and take it to scale by tapping into the power of global supply chains. Corporates have vast influence and much to learn from SMEs piloting gender-smart solutions.
Building on a deep foundation of women empowerment research, ICRW Advisors has been developing business-friendly gender diagnostics for nearly 8 years. We’ve scoped the field and tested a range of tools and interventions that enhance business and social impacts. While continuing to ideate alongside investors, SMEs, and corporates in a range of sectors, our partners see a growing need for supply chain investments that harmonize brands’ sustainability and traceability efforts with an equity lens.
Agribusiness supply chains are among the most vulnerable, and Sustainable Food Lab is a leading voice guiding corporations to a more socially and environmentally resilient future. As men shift to off-farm jobs, the proportion of women in agriculture has steadily risen in recent decades in all regions except Europe. The work of women laborers and co-farmers is invaluable but remains invisible to most buyers. This workshop will outline how leading fiber, food, beverage, and ingredient companies and investors can go beyond philanthropic initiatives with smallholders, to locate and empower women already contributing to global supply on large-scale farms and in intermediary firms. The upside of seeing and investing in these actors is high – supplier organizations that attract and advance women have the best shot at mitigating ESG risks, retaining agronomic skills, and succeeding at the regenerative transition – enhancing productivity and stabilizing supply for the future.
Speakers will introduce a harmonized ICRW gender equity diagnostic tool that advances five years of R&D in agriculture and manufacturing, for investors and companies to beta test and provide feedback on. We will also discuss technical assistance and supplier upgrading opportunities, and pre-competitive spaces where the industry can collaborate on related social sustainability efforts, such as promoting living income, eliminating forced labor, and addressing violence in the world of work.