A webinar was arranged on 7 December 2016 at Katalyst where the sector advisor, Dr. Linda Jones presented the ‘WEE index’- Katalyst’s Innovation on Women’s Economic Empowerment Measurement with the participants from Swisscontact’s other projects and Katalyst.
Ms. Bidowra Tahmin Khan, Katalyst, presented the background of WEE approach by Katalyst and the rationale of developing the index. Followed by that Dr. Jones shared how this index was developed to measure and assess the impact of market system interventions on Women’s Economic Empowerment. They also discussed statistical comparisons across four dimensions: financial autonomy, decision making, access to input and information, effect of workload and adding value to income. Furthermore, Dr. Jones highlighted the process and methodology of developing this measurement tool, the piloting and the Phase roll out. The most interesting part of the event was sharing the experience and outcome of applying WEE Index on two major interventions in prawn and vegetable sectors. The presenter also addressed the unique characteristics of the index in terms of having a structure that ensures consistency across measurement and reporting. Dr. Jones also focused on the flexibility and comparativeness of the index as it allows measurement internally and across the value chains including beneficiary groups and non-beneficiary groups. Dr. Jones added another important aspect of the index which is comprehensiveness as it includes multiple sets of questions to assess the WEE results and create further opportunities for follow-up qualitative assessments.
The event was a successful one with its knowledge sharing and interactive Questions and Answers sessions among the participants. The major take-aways from the webinar were the ways how the WEE index can be instrumental for portfolio management and its other potential applications.
The session was wrapped with a discussion on the way forward for developing a learning toolkit that can show development stakeholders the paths to construct specialized indices. The ending notes of the event also focused on reflecting upon the attribution strategy and empowerment outcomes from market facilitation.