Women’s Political and Economic Empowerment and Governance Programme

The overall goal of this program is to reduce gender inequalities through women’s political and economic empowerment and leadership as well as gender responsive governance and to strengthen the knowledge and capacities in these thematic areas. Evidence shows that investing in gender equality can reduce poverty, accelerate economic growth and inclusive and sustainable development and thus can benefit everyone.

Pays/région Thème Période Budget
Monde entier
Droits de l’homme (y compris droits des femmes)
Inclusion financière (niveaux global et politique)
Décentralisation - gouvernance locale - démocratisation (y compris redevabilité)
01.10.2014 - 30.09.2018
CHF 6'000'000

Since the introduction of the Millennium Development Goals, the economic and political inequalities between men and women have not been significantly reduced. However, women are key agents in poverty reduction, food security, and sustainable development. Evidence shows that reducing the gender gap in access to economic resources leads to enhanced prosperity and development for everyone and is thus smart economics. Moreover, increasing the political participation and empowering women as political and social actors, changes policy choices and makes institutions more representative of a range of voices leading to improved well-being of the whole society. In spite of these facts, attention to gender equality is still insufficient in economic and political policy formulation, as well as in governance, planning, budgeting and implementation. Furthermore, the amount of financing to reduce discrimination, gender gaps and inequalities is largely insufficient and needs to be significantly increased or funds reallocated. The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN-Women), created in July 2010 by the UN General Assembly, addresses the challenges of persisting gender inequalities. UN-Women is one of Switzerland’s priority multilateral organizations as decided in the Message on International Cooperation 2013-2016.


The program will address three of the six strategic goals of UN-Women, namely the following:

- Increasing women’s political empowerment, leadership and participation so that women lead and participate in decision-making at all levels.

- Making plans and budgets gender responsive so that governance and national planning fully reflect accountability for gender equality commitments and priorities.

- Enhancing women’s economic empowerment so that women, especially the poorest and most excluded, are economically empowered and benefit from development.

Through this program SDC will contribute to strengthening the knowledge base and capacities of UN-Women field offices and policy makers in these three strategic goal areas and support the implementation of projects in the field. The program has three components that involve the use of different instruments to complement each other. The first two components involve support to strategic actions in political empowerment, gender responsive governance and economic empowerment that will be undertaken by two thematic sections of the Policy Office at the headquarters of UN-Women to strengthen knowledge and capacity. The third component concerns a contribution to the UN-Women Fund for Gender Equality, which supports projects for women’s political and economic empowerment and gender responsive governance at the field level through the provision of grants, provided on a competitive basis, to government agencies and civil society organizations.

Groupes cibles

Ultimate beneficiaries are women and girls, especially disadvantaged and marginalized ones in poor and middle income countries and their families.

UN-Women country offices, World Bank Group country offices, policy makers, government institutions, national and regional civil society organizations will benefit from the development of guidance, tools, training courses and technical support to plan, implement and/or monitor more gender responsive policies and programs.

Through this multi-bilateral program, complementary to the core contribution to UN-Women, the intention is to strengthen Swiss strategic influence on UN-Women and the collaboration of UN-Women with the World Bank Group (WBG) as well as to enlarge the impact of UN-Women at the field level.

Effets à moyen terme

- Legal frameworks, policies, National Development Strategies and sectoral plans with specific commitments to advance gender equality and women’s empowerment are reformed/adopted, implemented and monitored.

- Increased participation of women in all spheres of public life, including in decision making and electoral processes.

- Women in partner countries have increased access to and control over economic resources such as land, technology, credit and markets.

- Women in partner countries have increased options for decent work conditions, increased income and enhanced social protection, as well as better conditions, confidence, capacities and leadership skills to develop enterprises and improve their livelihoods.



Principaux résultats antérieurs:  

The Fund for Gender Equality, which had received a first contribution from Switzerland, achieved the following key results in 2013:

- In Bosnia and Herzegovina, 200 new jobs for rural and urban women were created as a result of six local gender action plans.

- In several countries, rural collectives were organized, supporting income generation, savings and access to microcredit for rural women and girls. Women and girls were trained in business and financial management, livestock and agricultural technologies and strategies to strengthen market participation. Women’s peer networks and intergenerational partnerships were organized, new young women leaders mobilized, an increasing number of women voted in political elections or ran for political office, and more women were elected to political positions.


Direction/office fédéral responsable DDC
Crédit Coopération au développement
Partenaire de projet Partenaire contractuel
Organisme des Nations Unies (ONU)
  • Entité des Nations Unies pour l’égalité des sexes et l’autonomisation des femmes

Partenaire de mise en œuvre
Partenaires multiples locaux

Budget Phase en cours Budget de la Suisse CHF   6'000'000 Budget suisse déjà attribué CHF   6'000'000
Phases du projet Phase 1 01.10.2014 - 30.09.2018   (Phase en cours)