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The Philippines has made major achievements in women’s economic empowerment; with more than 40% of women enrolled in tertiary education, women holding 40% of senior management roles, and owning almost one quarter of small to medium enterprises.  The Philippines is the gender equality leader in South East Asia and ranked 8th out of 149 countries in the 2018 global gender gap index.

While the Philippines has made strong progress, cultural and political barriers continue to restrict opportunities available to women. Taking into account women’s higher levels of education, employers in the Philippines pay women 23-30%2 less than men, and appoint fewer women to leadership positions with 30% of boards composed entirely of men.

Filipino cultural norms also place the burden of unpaid housework and childcare upon women, restricting opportunities to progress in the workplace and in business. Women’s workforce participation is just 46% in the Philippines compared to 76% for men.

In collaboration with corporations and business leaders, impact investors and entrepreneurs, governments and advocates in the Philippines, Investing in Women is building the business case and spearheading the campaign for women’s economic equality in South East Asia.

Latest Resources

Outside Looking In: Gendered Perspectives in Work and Education

28 May 2020

This book presents research on the apparent lag in the education of boys, the gender differences in educational mobility, the important roles of housework in the economy, the effects of nonmarket work such as housework on labour market participation, and the gender pay gap in agriculture. It underscores challenges faced by women and men in ...

Gender norms and change

26 May 2020

This paper provides an overview of evidence on recent program interventions that address gender norms. Its purpose is to provide a summary of how these interventions have sought to influence gender norms and the lessons learned from these efforts.

Report: COVID-19 and Women’s Economic Participation

20 May 2020

This report provides analysis from a rapid but extensive literature review around the impacts of COVID-19, previous pandemics and recessions on the economic position of women. It also includes analysis on actual and potential impacts in Indonesia, Myanmar, Philippines and Vietnam, as well as risks and opportunities looking ahead.  

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