Gender Lens Investing Networking Lunch

This lunch will bring together delegates focused on gender issues across the Asia Pacific region to participate in a networking lunch at the AVPN conference.

In a relaxed environment, we encourage delegates to discuss some of the ways they are utilising social finance to support women entrepreneurs.  What are the impact themes around gender that they are targeting as investors and the current state of gender lens impact investing across Asia?  This is an opportunity to share some of the innovations seen in philanthropy and social investing in the gender sector across the region.

The lunch will also feature an introduction to Investing in Women – an initiative of the Australian Government – by their CEO, Dr. Julia Newton-Howes. Abhilash Mudaliar, Director of Research at the GIIN, will also share insights from their soon-to-be published Southeast Asia Landscape Report, with market intelligence on gender lens investing

Designing a Gender Lens Investing Action Plan: A Tool for Investment

Session Description

Keen to invest with a gender lens but not sure where to start? Embarked on a gender lens investing strategy but looking to fine-tune and focus. This workshop is designed to help.

Built on the Criterion Institute’s methodology for using finance as a tool for social change, we will walk through the investment process step by step, to help you design an action plan to develop and implement a gender lens investing strategy suited to your work.

Whether you are part of a foundation working to end poverty, a women’s rights organization promoting gender equality in government policy, a donor agency who wants to invest in people who can better translate and bridge between gender and finance, or an impact investor who want to incorporate gender analysis, this workshop is designed to help you tackle your sticky problems in a safe space while simultaneously learning about and experimenting with ways you might use the systems of finance as a tool for social change.

Along the way, you will hear examples from investors who have already gone through this process, learning from their successes and challenges. Participants will leave the workshop with a framework, great ideas and a few strategies to realize their gender lens investing practice.

Combating Gender Based Violence

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Session Description

It is estimated that 71% of the 40.3 million people in modern slavery are women and girls. Women in poverty face multiple layers of difficulty in avoiding or escaping gender-based violence. They have lesser financial independence and fewer exit routes, and they often live amid longstanding social norms that at best turn a blind eye to the difficulties they face. The impact of gender-based violence women’s employment and productivity have much broader repercussions for business and development.

The breakout session on gender-based violence will examine the policy responses to these alarming trends, gender sensitive approaches implemented by the private sector and prevention and efforts to improve transparency being prioritized by various stakeholders’ businesses, investors and civil society organizations.

Key Takeaways:

  • Highlight the work being done by social investors to raise awareness on gender-based violence and supporting long-term change.
  • What are some of the key policy initiatives being championed to target gender-based violence?
  • Key challenges and opportunities for organisations to fund initiatives to combat modern slavery and gender-based violence

Innovative Financing in Gender

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Session Description

Organizations seeking the most effective way to maximize social impact in gender have led to the development of different forms of innovative financing. The breakout session will highlight the innovations that are being seen across the Asia-Pacific region to support the more rapid inclusion of women into the economy, to leverage their economic power and to boost growth through purchasing parity and equality in this sector.  This session will draw on perspectives from different actors to discuss what different funding models look like, what approaches are being used to jointly solve complex problems in gender and how the joint efforts can add value to gender lens investing.

Key Takeaways:

  • What are some of the financing innovations being implemented in Asia to support a more gender equitable society?
  • Share experiences on how the social investing can work together and more strategically to unlock new sources of financing, deal pipelines, and learning
  • Present examples from across the social investment spectrum, from collective funders, to investing frameworks, impact investing and Development Impact Bonds

Please fill out the session feedback form via the link here

Investing in Digital Inclusion and Last Mile Connectivity in Asia

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Session Description

The incredible proliferation of mobile phones and the internet offers a profound opportunity to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of social impact across key sectors in the region such as health, agriculture, education, and governance.  However, only one in three people in the developing world are connected to the internet and within this, women are at a further disadvantage as the gap between men and women with access to internet reaches 25%.  While many stakeholders in the social sector are underpinning their solutions on beneficiaries being able to be connected, significant barriers still persist for people in developing countries in Asia to effectively access the internet.

This session will explore the importance of access to mobile services and the internet for social impact solutions to be implemented, and more importantly scaled effectively in the social sector.  How can impact be created if beneficiaries cannot access, have the means or financial ability to be able to adopt voice and internet connectivity?  It will present innovative connectivity solutions that are emerging to reach low-income consumers in the most challenging markets and discuss the role that social investors can play to support and scale these market-based solutions.

For more insights into the challenges and opportunities that innovative last-mile connectivity enterprises are facing, read the blog post by USAID.

Key Takeaways:

  • What is the state of digital inclusion in Asia and what role can social investors play in closing the digital divide?
  • How does voice and data connectivity lead to social impact outcomes, particularly for low-income and marginalized communities in Asia? And how do we measure this impact?
  • What are some examples of innovative solutions that have been used to provide connectivity? How have funders and resource providers (intermediaries) invested in enterprises offering these solutions as well as measuring their social impact?
  • Where can current and new investors go to explore resources and identify pipeline for last-mile connectivity investment opportunities?

Addressing Gender Inequality to Create Impact

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Session Description

Women’s unequal participation in decision-making processes and labour markets compound inequalities and often prevent women from fully participating in the economy. However, studies have also shown that changing women’s status requires addressing the norms and practices of all community members as women cannot hold up half the sky without engagement from the other half.

As more organisations begin to invest in gender-related policies, it is important to recognize and acknowledge various initiatives such as gender pay equity, sourcing from women-owned businesses, improving the skills and capabilities of women workers, developing unique products for women consumers and their impact of addressing the issue of gender inequality. This breakout session will bring different stakeholders together to understand constraints, barriers and opportunities women face in differing contexts across the region and how key stakeholders can help to shift the gender norms and the power structures.

Key Takeaways:

  • What are the gender considerations we need to ensure women’s full and equal participation in the economy?
  • How can gender perspectives be integrated to ensure gender-equitable outcomes that result in increased impact?
  • Increase awareness of the power of mainstreaming gender conversations via specific case studies and examples from our panelists

Plenary – Accelerating Women’s Empowerment

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Session Description

Women in Asia are on average 70% less likely than men to be in the labor force, and this gap persists despite economic growth, decreasing fertility rates, and increasing education.  This plenary will examine how stakeholders from intermediaries, government, foundations and corporates are all working to support women overcome these barriers to women entering and fully participating in the formal economy.  The plenary will set the conversation on these issues as AVPN 2018 will look at the role that education, healthcare and livelihoods can play in creating pathways for women to develop and grow. Why is it important? As long as women remain part of the informal economy, their impact is muted, their own economic situation remains perilous and they risk their long-term success being able to be pulled at any time by a make relative.

Key Takeaways:

  • Understanding the impact of women’s participation in the economy on gender equality and women’s empowerment.
  • What are the key interventions required to develop the economic potential of women?
  • What are the key notable innovations/initiatives being launched in Asia to accelerating Women’s Empowerment in Asia?

Please fill out the session feedback form via the link here

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