Applying a gender lens to measuring risk: investing to end gender-based violence

New approaches are seeking to accelerate the pace of reform and incentivise governments to comprehensively address the issue of gender-based violence. Gender lens investing is a relatively new approach used to identify investments that will provide a financial return while considering the potential benefits, or negative impact on women and girls, such as by improving economic opportunities for and social well-being of women and girls.

This article in Foreign Policy takes a look at the impact that gender-based violence has on productivity and the contribution that gender lens investing can make by re-examing how investors understand risk: https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/09/12/protecting-women-will-make-you-money/

The article describes a refined gender lens investing approach as one that moves away from just looking at women as employees, members of a company’s board or owners of businesses. It looks at ‘gender patterns’, such as the impact of gender-based violence, to inform decision making and incentivises efforts to address discriminatory or structural issues.

Pacific Women has supported studies in Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Fiji to inform businesses of the impact of domestic and sexual violence in workplaces in each of these countries. These studies make it clear that significant numbers of employees are impacted by domestic and sexual violence and that it affects their productivity in the workplace. These studies have contributed to building the ‘business case’ for businesses to address the pervasive issue of high rates of gender-based violence in the Pacific.

In the Papua New Guinea a number of private sector-focused initiatives draw on this data and are supporting workplace reforms. Read more about the Papua New Guinea Business Coalition for Women Inc. and the Bel isi PNG initiative in the Pacific Women Papua New Guinea Performance Report 2018–2019: https://pacificwomen.org/key-pacific-women-resources/pacific-women-papua-new-guinea-performance-report-2018-2019/  Or go to their websites: http://www.pngbcfw.org./  or https://www.belisipng.org.pg/