New Visions

Has the global financial crisis opened up opportunities for women? Find out from the visionaries below.

Does Crisis Breed Opportunity?

A silver lining of the recent worldwide financial crisis is that it exposed flaws in our economic systems and has created some opportunities for change. In places as diverse as Bangladesh, Barbados, Bolivia, Kampala and Manila, there is growing momentum for a new economic agenda--one that better addresses the challenges that women around the world face and promotes their involvement and expertise. Read and listen to the visionaries below as they share their insights, unpack important concepts, ask the big questions, and help us imagine a brighter, more equitable future.


As we imagine a new economic future for women, what's our ultimate goal? Is it to put more women in charge or change the system? Are these the same thing? Curator Masum Momaya explores these questions.

Kathy LeMay, president and CEO of Raising Change, a social change fundraising organization, explains what financial security means to her.


Women are undervalued globally because they earn less than men. But Samasource is spreading digital work to women in the poorest parts of the world, proving that work for women matters.

Artist Mira Michelle used a period of unemployment and personal hardship to change her lifestyle and reconsider the relationship between the economy, ecology and home.

Artist Tammy Mike Laufer uses digital manipulation to depict representations of women working towards economic equality.

Our current economic system is based on exchange. Genevieve Vaughan suggests that an alternative economic model based on giving could help us recover from the global financial crisis.


Susmita Barua says that all citizens must learn economic literacy and value the contributions of women for systemic change to happen.

Mahnaz Afkhami says that women's empowerment involves raising consciousness, building skills, and reforming unjust laws that limit women.


Patricia Licuanan reflects on progress since the 1995 U.N. Fourth World Conference on Women and the challenges that lie ahead.

How is the global economic crisis affecting the lives of ordinary U.S. women? What are they doing about it? Meizhu Lui explores these, and other, important questions.


Julie Nelson says that the words we use to describe the economy inevitably shape our understanding of it. But what if we changed those words? Could that lead to big-picture economic changes?

Evaluating what care is worth reveals that women play a fundamental role in the economy, and one that's been neglected by economists for decades.


Empowering women is good for the economy and the society. Listen as social economist Naila Kabeer talks about the relationship between social justice, economic growth, and gender equity.

Women are in a unique position to promote a new model of economics: sufficiency. Lynne Twist says this could change the world beyond our current economic crisis.


Former President of Ireland Mary Robinson argues that the economic crisis is a perfect opportunity for revising what matters in the economy and for improving labor conditions for workers across the world.

The revolution is not yet complete. Microfinance has helped harness women's economic power, but women must also be allowed to operate in the economy at a macro level, writes Zainab Salbi.


Investing in women is a sound social and financial approach to alleviating the current crisis and preventing others. So why isn't it a more prevalent business strategy?

Unless we empower women workers and entrepreneurs, economic recovery, stability and growth will be a long time coming, warns Irene Natividad, president of the Global Summit of Women.


The economic relationship between Africa and China is full of potential successes and pitfalls, says Hafsat Abiola, founder of China Africa Bridge. But now, both partners have a secret weapon: women, their greatest untapped resource.

Professor Lourdes Beneria says that looking at economics through a gendered lens will change our definitions of value, wealth, and work and lead to a more balanced global economy.


Budgets are the ultimate allocation of power. Gender budgeting expert Jane Midgley rewrites Obama's budget to make it more women-centered.

It's time to bake a new economic pie. It's time to redefine the economy by better including women's contributions and by acknowledging the vital work of caring for people, says author Riane Eisler.



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