Gender Innovation Lab Federation Causal Evidence Series

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This series highlights the work of the five Gender Innovation Labs (GILs) that constitute the GIL Federation, a World Bank community of practice coordinated by the World Bank Gender Group. The briefs include key findings from impact evaluations of development interventions in nine areas (education, labor markets, entrepreneurship, agriculture, land titling, care, social protection, gender-based violence, and adolescent girls). They provide evidence and lessons on how to close gender gaps and foster women’s economic empowerment in these areas. They also serve as an analytical foundation for the World Bank Gender Strategy 2024-2030.

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Policy Lessons on Social Protection

2023, Halim, Daniel, Ubfal, Diego, Wangchuk, Rigzom

Several circumstances make women more vulnerable to economic shocks than men. Women are more likely than men to be out of the labor force due to care responsibilities. When they work, women are more likely to have low-paying jobs in the informal sector. Moreover, women have lower access to financial services and other strategies to mitigate shocks. Social protection systems can enable women to cope with and adapt to economic shocks. In particular, adaptive social protection systems can help identify the differential needs of women to prepare support mechanisms and build the resilience of poor and vulnerable households before, during, and after large shocks like the COVID-19 pandemic occur. The GIL Federation is generating rigorous evidence around the world to understand what works, and what does not, in supporting women with social protection interventions. This note presents evidence on four key findings based on impact evaluations.