FIDA International has joined in partnership with the World Bank Group’s Women, Business, and the Law project (WBL). This project focuses on setting out legal differentiations on the basis of gender in 142 economies around the world, covering 6 areas—accessing institutions, using property, getting a job, dealing with taxes, building credit, and going to court. Women, Business and the Law acknowledge the importance of wide-ranging factors for women’s economic opportunities, but focuses on one particular area: aspects of the formal legal and regulatory environment that enable women to find jobs or start their own businesses. The project surveys national laws, regulations and institutions that may affect women’s incentives and capacity to start businesses and get jobs.
The pilot edition of the Women Business and the Law report was launched in 2010, and their latest edition titled Women, Business and the Law 2012: Removing Barriers to Economic Inclusion was launched on September 26, 2011, with great success. A copy of the previous editions of the report and database can be found on WBL’s website: wbl.worldbank.org. For their 2014 edition, Women, Business and the Law is working on expanding coverage of the existing indicators and including a new case study indicator on Violence Against Women.
FIDA is joining WBL’s effort to increase their network of contributors and would like to invite our legal affiliates to participate in this project by completing questionnaires for the 2014 edition of the Women, Business and the Law report. The project relies on the valuable expertise of legal practitioners to gather information on how the legal environment may impact women’s economic rights. They seek up-to-date legal information through a series of questions included in three surveys: Family Law survey, Employment Law survey and Violence Against Women survey. These surveys are also available in Spanish and French. WBL is particularly interested in reforms implemented since March 31, 2011.
Employment Law Survey:
This survey covers two of the six topic areas related to labor and employment law:
- Getting a job—assesses restrictions on women’s work such as prohibitions on working at night or in certain industries. It also covers laws on maternity and paternity benefits and on retirement ages.
- Dealing with taxes—examines personal income tax liabilities, taking into account tax credits and deductions available to women relative to men.
Family Law Survey:
This survey covers three of the six topic areas related to family law:
- Accessing institutions—explores women’s legal ability to interact with public authorities and the private sector in the same ways as men.
- Using property—analyzes women’s ability to access and use property based on their capacity to own, manage, control and inherit it.
- Going to court—considers the ease and affordability of accessing justice
Violence Against Women survey:
This survey covers their newest indicator, which focuses on:
- General Legislation and Policy – establishes the existence of legislation and implementation mechanisms.
- Domestic Violence – assesses coverage and extent of legislation on domestic violence.
- Sexual Harassment – assesses coverage and extent of legislation on sexual harassment.
- Services – determines extent of service provision for victims under the law.
The surveys are to be completed on a pro bono basis and will be distributed electronically. Respondents should expect to take 1-3 hours, depending on the particular survey, to complete each of them. Both the Family Law and Employment Law surveys include pre-populated answers for previous years’ questions, for which you will only have to corroborate that no reforms or amendments have been enacted. Additional new questions are also included in both surveys. Upon completion, respondents will receive special mention in the 2014 WBL report and the World Bank’s WBL website. WBL will follow up with respondents directly, should they have any questions. The report is due to be published in September 2013.
Interested participants must have proven experience in the six topic areas as they relate to Employment or Family Law. Please express your interest to conduct the survey(s) by visiting WBL’s website and completing the form to Become a Contributor. Please, indicate your country and area(s) of legal expertise, as well as your email address so they can contact you directly.
We would be most appreciative if you could also forward to your colleagues who have relevant experience. Thank you in advance for your consideration.