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Promoting Inclusive Markets and Financial Systems


Inclusive Business and Women in Market Systems

Mar 31, 2015 (Tue), 9:30am-11:00am (US EST)

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The SEEP Network and UN Women have teamed up to offer you a chance to engage with key experts on both conceptual and practical issues around women’s economic empowerment in inclusive market systems. Following an exceptionally well-attended first webinar in the "From Theory to Practice: Women’s Economic Empowerment in Inclusive Market Systems Development" series, we will now begin diving into the practical implications of the theoretical approach that was presented in January.

Now, join us for the second webinar in the series!


Missed the first webinar? You can catch up on it here.

Studies show that businesses that actively promote gender equality and women’s empowerment within their core business model enhance the economic benefits to their company, while also reducing gender inequalities in the communities where the business works. This can create and reinforce a positive cycle of economic benefits to both a company and a community.

This webinar and discussion thread will examine the role of market systems facilitators in applying a market systems approach to women’s economic empowerment. It will look at how implementing organizations can promote inclusive business practices that empower women, what specific incentives can drive the private sector to adopt such practices, key lessons for selecting appropriate private sector partners, and how to effectively make the “business case.”


Stay tuned!
There will be an e-discussion on EmpowerWomen.org beginning immediately after the webinar.



Linda Jones - Private Sector Development Expert Consultant

Linda Jones has experience in over 24 countries in Africa and Asia, providing extensive program and consulting in inclusive economic growth, specializing in SME impact investing, market systems approaches (MD/M4P), women's economic empowerment, and value chain development/finance. Before working in development, Linda's background is in the private sector where she specialized in high tech start-up companies and their business development including venture capital, private investment and government funding. She brought this expertise to the development field and was a thought leader in advancing economic areas of practice including value chain development, value chain finance, (gendered) market systems approaches and impact investing. Her expertise has led to industry contributions such as Editor of the Enterprise Development and Microfinance Journal, co-author of Agricultural Value Chain Finance with the FAO, editor of Value Chains in Development and other extensive publications, and extensive training for institutions such as the ILO, Southern New Hampshire University, the SEEP Network and customized training. Linda has a doctorate in Anthropology/Linguistics from McMaster University and a diploma in Peace and Conflict Studies from Conrad Grebel College.

Meg Jones - Chief of Economic Empowerment Section, Policy Division, UN Women

Meg Jones joins UN Women from the International Trade Center, where she has been working as a Women and Trade Programme Manager since November 2007. In this role she is responsible for the design and implementation of ITC’s multi-year, multimillion-dollar Women and Trade Programme to help women in developing countries derive greater economic benefit from their participation in trade. Prior to ITC, Meg was CEO of the Constructive Connections Sarl in 2003 - 2007, a Swiss-based consultancy firm she founded, which offers consulting services on trade and its social dimensions. She also worked as the Deputy Director of the Evian Group in 2005 - 2006, a Swiss based trade think tank focused on the multi-lateral trading system, and as a Human Rights Officer at the OHCHR in 2002-2003. From 1990 – 2001 she held various positions at the University of Sydney, Medicines sans Frontieres, University of New South Wales, and the Permanent Mission of Australia to the UN in Geneva. A national of New Zealand, Meg received her Bachelor of Economics and Master of International Relations from the University of Sydney.

Elizabeth Vazquez - CEO and Co-Founder of WEConnect International

Elizabeth A. Vazquez is the President, CEO, and Co-Founder of WEConnect International, a corporate led non-profit that helps to empower women business owners to succeed in global markets. She is a serial social entrepreneur and world leader in global supplier diversity and inclusion. WEConnect International global members are true pioneers in global supplier development and inclusion, with over US$700 billion in annual purchasing power and a clear interest in buying more from women's business enterprises. Ms. Vazquez is also an Advisor to the Clinton Global Initiative and a member of the International Council on Women’s Business Leadership led by Ambassador Melanne Verveer and the Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton. She has trained leaders in all regions of the world on a range of issues--globalization, value chains, international trade, diversity and inclusion, women's entrepreneurship, and corporate and government sourcing policies and practices. Ms. Vazquez was born in Mexico, has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Arizona State University. She has a Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School at Tufts University where she studied development economics and international negotiation as a Woodrow Wilson Fellow. She also completed graduate seminars at Harvard Law School and the Kennedy School of Government, the Heinz School of Public Policy and Management at Carnegie Mellon University, and Sookmyung Women’s University in South Korea.


Wade Channell - Senior Economic Growth Advisor for Gender, USAID

Wade Channell, J.D., is an economic development expert specializing in the use of law and legal reform to stimulate economic growth. A senior legal reform advisor for USAID, Wade has more than 20 years of experience in identifying legal and institutional constraints to private sector activity and economic freedom. He has worked extensively in Africa, Eastern Europe and Eurasia on economic reform projects and has lived in Brazil, Guinea-Bissau, Croatia and Belgium. While in Croatia, Wade also served as president of the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham).

 Register now!


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