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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

Feminist diversities: Contemporary issues in gender and development

01 October 2020

The Philippine Journal of Social Development is a peer-reviewed journal published by the College of Social Work and Community Development, University of the Philippines, Diliman. This  volume is a compilation of papers exploring present-day issues on gender and development, from a feminist standpoint.

Pressure to work and care under COVID-19: Social norms in the private sector in Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam

17 September 2020

This Research Note presents a short summary of the impact of COVID-19 measures on the pressure to work and care amongst private sector employees in Vietnam, the Philippines and Indonesia .

Leading to success: The business case for women in business and management in the Philippines

15 September 2020

This country brief demonstrates the business case for gender diversity in management and workplace gender equality in the Philippines considering the COVID-19 context. The brief also showcases ILO’s efforts to provide women workers with critical STEM-related soft and technical skills to improve their employability and career prospects in the Philippines.

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