Gendered Impacts of Globalization: Employment and Social Protection


This paper examines how globalisation affects gendered access to employment and social protection, with a particular focus on informal employment, and the implications of these connections for policy and practice. It reviews available evidence on the interconnections between policies associated with globalisation on the one hand, and gender structures within labour markets and systems of social protection, on the other. The paper reports that processes of globalization have coincided with women's increasing labour force participation, empowering some. However, it has also coincided with an increase in informal and unprotected forms of work, and unfavourable working conditions for many. Structural conditions in global production chains where women workers are concentrated have made it difficult to see improvements in wages and working conditions, and significant gender pay gaps exist. The paper also outlines some evidence on social and economic policy options to address these challenges.

A 36 pp. overview of the programme paper is also appended.

See also the DFID policy brief based on this review.


Razavi, S.; Arza, C.; Braunstein, E.; Cook, S.; Goulding, K. Gendered Impacts of Globalization: Employment and Social Protection. UNRISD Gender and Development Programme Papers (2012) No. 16, 101 pp.

Published 1 January 2012