Empowering women

October 24, 2017

a smiling woman sowing in Nairobi, Kenya

Photo credit: IDRC

The Sustainable Development Goals’ commitment to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all will be achieved only if development initiatives consider and promote the unique needs, knowledge, roles, and potential of women.

IDRC funds research that supports gender equality, facilitates women’s empowerment, and builds the capacity of female researchers to become leaders. By supporting research that confronts the structural and root causes of gender inequalities, IDRC helps to ensure that women, young girls, and children can take advantage of the same opportunities as men.

What does empowering women look like?

It looks like supporting agricultural innovations that improve women’s income and access to markets, promoting female entrepreneurship in technology-based interventions, and examining how care work and other domestic duties are valued and redistributed inside and outside the household.

These projects explore some of the many ways that IDRC-supported research is promoting gender equality and ultimately contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals. By sharing efforts to empower women, IDRC is contributing to a vital global conversation that will help make gender equality a reality worldwide.

Gender in context


Science and technology

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Women are significantly underrepresented in science, making up only 28% of all researchers globally.





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Coding Rights leverages creative feminist approaches to support online rights.

Inclusive economies

A teacher helping a student in a class room in Nairobi, KenyaCould affordable daycare be the key to unlocking women’s earning power in Africa?

Balancing childcare and income generation is a problem faced by mothers around the world.






five pregnant african womenGender and violence in cities

Millions, especially women, live with a deep sense of insecurity and experience violence in a multitude of forms each day.





A man and a woman sitting on a stoop looking at a mobile phoneGender Equality

How think tanks are making a difference

Agriculture and environment

Kenya: Siprosa Atieno weeds her cassava field at dawnBeyond access: Putting women first in agriculture

In sub-Saharan Africa, gender inequality costs us an estimated US$ 95 billion a year.






woman collecting water in Delhi, IndiaStruggling for safe access to water and sanitation

The women of Bawana and Bhalswa are promoting their right to better services.








Expert views on gender



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