The Ghana Climate Innovation Centre (GCIC), in collaboration with IMANI Ghana, recently convened a policy roundtable to present a report on fostering greater inclusion and participation of women in Ghana’s burgeoning green economy.
The report, which delves into ‘Capturing the individualized stories of the challenges women encounter in participating in climate-smart enterprises’, aligns with the GCIC’s commitment to advance its mandate through robust policy advocacy.
A 2019 study by the Mastercard Index of Women’s Entrepreneurship (MIWE) revealed that Ghana has the highest percentage of businesses owned by women globally, standing at an impressive 46.4%. Leveraging this insight and through its policy unit, Policy Alternatives for a Green Economy (PAGE – Ghana), the GCIC endeavors to shape government decision-making processes for policies conducive to a climate-resilient society, equally for female and male business owners.
This includes the promotion of innovation, low-carbon solutions, carbon budgets, and policy plans to meet carbon budgets. GCIC’s PAGE – Ghana achieves its goals through the implementation of green policy research, government advocacy on climate policy issues, policy dialogues, roundtables and events, such as the recent policy roundtable on women’s participation in the green economy, and international peer exchange & knowledge brokerage.
The rise of women’s engagement in Ghana’s green economy is pivotal for redressing prevailing social disparities and fostering a more equitable and inclusive trajectory of growth. Recognizing this, it is imperative that policies are intentionally crafted to tackle the unique challenges confronted by female-led enterprises within the green economy.
Moreover, amplifying awareness regarding the profound influence of women’s involvement in this sector can fortify policymakers’ dedication to create conducive environments with opportunities and incentives tailored to women.
The report explored critical aspects of women’s participation in Ghana’s green business sector by uncovering and analyzing diverse barriers hindering effective women’s participation in the country’s green business sector.
The document further delved into intricate cross-sectoral challenges faced by women in their climate-smart business activities, seeking to provide insights into comprehensive solutions cutting across various industries.
It also offered an exhaustive examination of the policy environment’s readiness to support women-led green business initiatives within Ghana’s broader climate action plan. The document additionally identified potential entry points within the existing framework to meet the specific needs of women-led green businesses, exploring strategic interventions, financial mechanisms, and support structures.
Beyond analysis, the document aimed to inform stakeholders, policymakers, and the public, promoting a more inclusive landscape for women entrepreneurs in sustainable and climate-smart business activities.
Some of the recommendations to address the issues identified in the research paper include a clear policy guideline to promote women in the green economy, increased access to STEM education, as well as increased public awareness about climate finance solutions that are available to the private sector.
It is important to note that the GCIC has developed tailored programs for female business owners as part of its Incubator, including the Women Entrepreneurs Transformation Program (WETP), to address the specific needs of women entrepreneurs.
These initiatives aim to provide gender-sensitive business advisory services and amplify the influence of women in the business sector. GCIC, with the support of its funders, Global Affairs Canada, is dedicated to fostering gender balance among climate-smart SMEs, ensuring active, fair, and equitable participation in the business landscape.
The detailed policy paper will soon be available on the GCIC website https://www.ghanacic.org/download-category/policy-papers/ which also hosts previous policy papers including the paper on Identifying Supportive Fiscal Policies For Green Businesses In Ghana: An Analysis of the Existing Tax Regime and Implications for Financial Sustainability.