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Female workers in the informal sector

WIEGO / The informal economy is often stigmatized as a "shadow economy" and characterized as illegal and unethical. Such generalization is unfair to the vast majority of two billion informal workers trying to earn a decent living.


The unique WIEGO (Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing) network, which is based on researchers, development workers and activists worldwide in interaction with poor workers, has become an important influencing agent with respect to local, national and global power. WIEGO is a global network that prioritizes empowering poor working people, especially women in the informal economy, to improve their living situation. The starting point is that all employees must have equal economic opportunities, rights, protection and vote. 

WIEGO was founded in 1997 by ten activists, researchers and development workers. Everyone was concerned that the poor in the informal economy were not understood, valued or supported politically – neither nationally nor by the international community. Today, through global political debate, WIEGO continues to create an understanding of women's challenges in the informal sector in particular.

One of WIEGO's first contributions was to develop a conceptual framework to enable data collection and improve knowledge and understanding. . .

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