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Jon Talton

Analysis and commentary on economic news, trends and issues, with an emphasis on Seattle and the Northwest.

Category: International Women’s Day
March 8, 2012 at 10:15 AM

Women and economic progress, in the developing and advanced world

For International Women’s Day, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has put together some telling information about women in the developing world. For example, women produce some 80 percent of the food in Africa but own only 1 percent of the farmland. Women in the developing world are 5 times less likely than men to own land, and their farms tend to be smaller and less fertile.

Women are less like to have access to financing to make their farms more productive. The same is true for their ability to leverage technology and expert knowledge. In addition to the farmwork, women are charged with caring for children, cooking and cleaning — this takes up about six hours a day. Address this, the foundation says, and global hunger could be reduced by 150 million people, along with giving women more disposable income and reducing dependency on foreign aid. You can read about the foundation’s so-called gender responsive agriculture programs here.

Meanwhile in the United States, here are Working Mother magazine’s 10 best companies for women’s executive advancement (none in our region); the best firms for multicultural women, and the best companies for hourly workers.

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