Towards Gender Balance in Public Procurement: Understanding the Barriers and Solutions to Include Women-Led Businesses
Research documenting the challenges and opportunities to empower women-led businesses in public procurement
Value for Women and the Open Contracting Partnership developed this research report to document the challenges and opportunities to empower women-led businesses in public procurement. The research examines the challenges women-led businesses experience in public procurement, explores some of the wider challenges of shaping gender-responsive procurement policies, and summarizes key reforms pursued by governments to create fairer and more inclusive procurement systems.
This study sought out to answer the following questions:
- What barriers do women-led businesses face in accessing public procurement opportunities?
- What challenges do governments face when trying to increase procurement from women-led businesses?
- What can governments do to promote gender-responsive procurement?
The methodology for the study summarized in this report included a desk review of relevant literature, analysis of the public procurement data from the City of Buenos Aires, Chile, and the Dominican Republic, and interviews with 14 stakeholders, including government officials implementing women's procurement programs and women’s entrepreneurship experts. The study focused on the gender-responsive procurement initiatives from: the General Directorate of Procurement and Contracts from the City of Buenos Aires, Argentina; ChileCompra, the Government Procurement Agency in Chile; and the General Directorate of Public Procurement in the Dominican Republic.
In its recommendations, this report identifies six categories of initiatives that governments may undertake in adopting a gender-responsive procurement system, defined by the effort typically required to implement them. Finally, as gender-responsive procurement processes take place within existing gender constructs in society, governments should harmonize their procurement policy with public policy objectives for greater women’s economic participation.
Value for Women is a global advisory services firm with a mission to promote women’s participation and leadership in business, finance and investment around the globe, with a focus on emerging markets.
The Open Contracting Partnership is a silo-busting collaboration across governments, businesses,
civil society, and technologists to open up and transform government contracting worldwide. It brings open data and open government together to ensure public money is spent openly, fairly
and effectively. It focuses on public contracts as they are the single biggest item of spending by
most governments. Spun out of the World Bank in 2015, the Open
Contracting Partnership is now an independent not-for-profit working in over 50 countries. Read more at: https://www.open-contracting.o...