Update from infoDe...

Women Incubation

Update from infoDev's Working Group on Women-Focused Business Incubation

Following a Request for Proposals infoDev has provided grants for building three global thematic work groups as part of infoDev's Global Incubation Network. These work groups are being set up for learning more about how to effectively serve women and youth through business incubation and about models for spurring high growth enterprises in ICT-enabled sectors in the poorer developing countries. This article highlights some of the activities that are currently underway in the working group on women-focused business incubation.

Women-Focused Business Incubation: Gateway to Economic Development through Women's Empowerment and Entrepreneurship

The project “Gateway to Economic Development through the Empowerment of Women” aims to create a global Working Group on Women on Business Incubation. The project covers all of infoDev's five regions of operation: Europe & Central Asia, Asia, MENA and South America, and Latin America and Caribbean and is open for participation from all over the world for building strong and reliable connections and relationships between participating organizations active in promoting Women Incubation and Entrepreneurship.

The general goal is to enhance the role of women entrepreneurs through business incubation.

The main objectives of the project are:

  • to generate knowledge outputs that help build the capacity of existing business incubators  targeting women entrepreneurs;
  • to promote the sharing of knowledge about Women Incubation;
  • to summarize the challenges for Women Incubation specific to countries or regions and outline activities needed for further improving the support structures for Women Incubation;
  • to establish a foundation for strengthening cooperation and network building between women incubators globally ;
  • to learn about global project organization and network building.

The main activities within this project will be:

  • to collect information (data base) about organizations (incubators, associations, donors etc)active in supporting women incubation and entrepreneurship;
  • to generate an overview of the particular challenges associated with business incubation targeting women entrepreneurs; to develop a set of lessons learned, good practices and methodologies that – in different regions and environments - have proven effective in business incubation targeting women;
  • to identify needs for training offers specific to Women Incubation based on existing incubator training offers;
  • to continuously feed information (success stories, good practices, tools, templates etc.) into the interactive web portal of infoDev (iDISC) for making it accessible to a wide audience of incubator professionals and stakeholders;
  • to establish a basis for network building by organizing a meeting (workshop) of the work group members and guests that can provide knowledge, experience and competencies to the Work Group.

The Working Group currently represents 27 members from more than 20 countries. The Working Group is being led by the Congress of Women of the Kyrgyz Republic, a member of infoDev Global Network of Business Incubators, and will be governed by a Steering Group in which all infoDev regions are represented by practitioners in business incubation and entrepreneurship. The project activities in the infoDev regions which will be led by regional coordinators. Please contact the following group members for further information:

Working Group Leader (Kyrgyz Republic) Zamira Akbagysheva, congresswomen@intranet.kg
Africa coordinator (Senegal) Mbarou Mbaye, mmbaye@ncnw.org
Asia coordinator (China) Li Guihuan, liguihuan@tjwbi.com
Asia coordinator (Malaysia) Annuar Safar, annuar62@gmail.com
ECA coordinator (Bulgaria) Rositza Djambazova, bi-gd@gocenet.net
LAC coordinator (Costa Rica) Noelia de León, foroempresariascr@gmail.com
MENA coordinator (Tunisia) Nejiba Khalfallah, n.khalfallah@elgazalacom.nat.tn

The knowledge produced by the International Working Group on Women in Business Incubation will be actively disseminated around the global business incubation community by using iDISC and the iDISC Newsletter as an important electronic tool for global knowledge-sharing and networking among infoDev regional networks. Regular updates will be provided in the form of e-news, reports, new models, and innovative tools.

infoDev provides the members of the Working Group on online platform for ongoing project development, including a discussion forum, file sharing, and member information. Please visit the Working Groups homepage for further information.

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