DoctHers: Pakistan’s ‘Doctor Brides’ Inspire Confidence — and Better Health — for Women

Women make up the majority of students pursuing medical careers in Pakistan. For years, a government-imposed quota mandated that 80 percent of the seats at medical schools go to men, 20 percent to women. In 1991, the Supreme Court ruled the quota unconstitutional. Now, more than 80 percent of Pakistan’s medical students are women, compared to

Every Day is International Women’s Day for Sustainable Development Goals

On International Women’s Day, we celebrate the social, economic and political achievement of women, and pledge to take action to accelerate gender parity. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) recognize that supporting gender equality and the rights of women and girls is an important objective of international development. Development innovation can accelerate the attainment of the

Shared Interest: Loan Guarantees – and System-Change – for Women in South Africa

One of the most compelling aspects of gender lens investing is its potential to incorporate women and girls into systems that have excluded them – and to change those systems. To change them by applying values and practices women prioritize in order to build more just and inclusive societies. During the past 22 years, Shared

Unstranded Assets: Reaping an Economic Dividend From Women’s Equality

Impact investing is a disruptive innovation. It’s upending traditional investing, crashing through old assumptions about how investors determine risk and assess value. Take for example, the concept of “stranded assets.” These are assets which are losing economic value well ahead of their anticipated useful life due to changes in technology, regulations, legislation, societal norms, environmental

Test in Nicaragua Shifts Lending for Women-Led Businesses From Collateral to Cashflow

Over the next two years, the first 30 to 40 companies will receive five-year loans of $25,000 to $30,000 at an annual interest rate of 18 percent, including both program fees and interest. Typical loan recipients are women-led or women-owned small- to medium-sized enterprises with annual sales of $100,000 to $250,000. The goal of the

Suzanne Biegel: How Investing with a Gender Lens Can Create a Powerful Women Effect (podcast)

I caught up recently with Suzanne for ImpactAlpha’s Returns on Investment podcast series. She explained there’s not a single gender lens, but rather multiple lenses. (Indeed, you can read more about them in ImpactAlpha’s Gender Lenses section.) Listen to ImpactAlpha’s interview with Suzanne Biegel in our Returns on Investment podcast. The first lens is women’s

The Power of the Purse: The Five P’s for Shifting Finance to Help Women and Girls

Purchasing power. Portfolio power. Philanthropic power. Political power. and ‘preneur power. Geri Stengel, president of Ventureneer, a digital media and market research company, has a good piece on Forbes.com rounding up the many ways consumers, investors, philanthropists, citizens and, yes, entrepreneurs can both harness and help the growing power of women and girls. Finance can impact issues as