Feminist Economic Literacy


What will we see if we look at the reality of women in work without following mainstream economic categorizations that gives different values to work, making unpaid care work mostly done by women invisible in their economic model and instead overvalue ‘productive work’? And how come that every where in the world there are manifestations of companies or people exploiting other people and resources?

Feminist Economic Literacy is for all women.

It is a tool for engendering broad public participation in debating and setting economic policy, economic literacy promotes a framework for revealing the structural causes of economic and social problems. It can help us to challenge destructive myths, to create positive policy alternatives, and to enhance community/neighbourhood alternatives.

WIDE+ and in the past WIDE developed a lot of materials to explain our roles in the economies from a feminist perspective with the method of popular education. It consists of tools to make complex ideas understandable and to uncover systemic issues behind what we observe:

  1. A first set of materials provide analysis and stories of women in the economy and alternatives build by collectives of women.
  2. A second set of materials can be used for training, recognizing that people learn in different ways. Thus, a variety of participatory tools (drama, role play, small groups, mapping) are included.

Analysis on Alternatives and current models (WIDE and WIDE+)

WIDE+’s Critical reflections and key recommendations for WB’s new Gender Equality Strategy. Summer, 21015.  WIDE_WBGstrategy_2015

Searching for socio-ecological and socio-economic transformation: a feminist perspective on the 4th De-Growth Conference in Germany. In this article Christa Wichterich reflects on the discourses and strategies discussed during the 4th De-Growth Conference. De conference brought 3000 people together in Leipzig, in September 2014, through 450 workshops, cultural events and plenaries: http://wp.me/P2KSLS-aU

Tools for feminist economy literacy, by WIDE+ members, Summer 2015 (Spanish and English). This offers a collection of “good-practice tools” that include a variety of methods, training tools, multimedia tools, and research approaches. It is the result of a collaboration between WIDE+ member associations KULU in Denmark, Le Monde selon Les Femmes in Belgium, WIDE Austria, WIDE Switzerland and WIDE-E Spain (in English and in Spanish):https://wide-netzwerk.at/economic-literacy-across-europe-2/, https://wide-netzwerk.at/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/mf-economic-literacyen.pdf, https://wide-netzwerk.at/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/mf-economic-literacyesp.pdf

German tool-kit for adult education on care economy (2017) by WIDE in Austria:Dullnig, Ursula et.al. (2017): Methodensammlung für die Erwachsenenbildung zum Thema: Feministische Care-Ökonomie, Wien, https://wide-netzwerk.at/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/JOAN_ROBINSON_Methoden_Care_Oekonomie2017.pdf


  • GADNETWORK UK, member of WIDE+, has developed two interesting series with papers (2016-2018): Feminist Development Alternatives, Gender Equality and Macro-Economics
  • Engendering EU General Budget Support: gender responsive budgeting as a tool for fostering gender equality in EU partner countries, published in 2009. Download ENGENDERING EU GENERAL BUDGET SUPPORT 2009.
  • Economic Alternatives for Gender and Social Justice: Voices and Visions from India and Latin America: “There Are a Thousand Alternatives”, 2011: alternatives India and Latin America
  • Economic Alternatives for Gender and Social Justice: Voices and Visions from Latin America, published in 2011: in English and: in Spanish.
  • “Neoclassical Economics as a Barrier for Gender Equality in a Human Centred World Economy” – a paper by Irene van Staveren.
  • ‘Key Feminist Concerns regarding core labour standards, decent work and corporate social responsibility’, Anja K. Franck, 2008. To download: here.
  • Agrofuel Production: the World Food Situation, the Right to Food and the Impact on Women, published in 2011. Download: Agrofuel Production English and Agrofuel Production German.
  • The Other Financial Crisis: Poor Women, Small Credits, Big Businesses, published in 2010 Download: Microcredit.
  • Feminist Alternatives for Social Justice: from a Capitalist “Care-less” Economy to wards a Solidarity-based “Care-full” Economy, published in 2010. Download: 29th Sept Demonstration leaflet.
  • In Search of Economic Alternatives for Gender and Social Justice: Voices from India, published in 2009: download.
  • Microcredit: an alternative for women’s empowerment?, published in 2009. Download the report in English, in French  and in Spanish.
  • WIDE Annual Conference report 2009: We CARE! Feminist responses to the care crisis. Care and care work must be understood ­ not as prerequisites to economic growth ­ but as the centre of human life. This understanding can bring about a political and economic shift in priorities from moneymaking and consumption, to creating new ways of being and living that are more dignifying and ethical. Download the report from worskhopreportsAC.
  • Just Budgets: Budgeting for Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment, published 2011. A Practical tool. Download the poster in English and in Spanish. The toolkit has been developed by One World Action and made available in Spanish by WIDE.
  • handbook economic literacy WIDE scanned 2003: A Handbook with many resources now digitally available (not complete yet).

Feminist Training and Stories Materials (WIDE, WIDE+ and others)

Feminist Economic Literacy resources collected through the IAFFE e-list in 2018: resourcesfemec_IAFFEelist2018, 

WIDE series ‘CASE STUDIES IN WOMEN´S EMPOWERMENT’, published in 2008
This series, originally prepared in the framework of WIDE´s economic literacy project as a tool for use in the context of capacity-building workshops, highlights some struggles and initiatives led by women today in the South, North, East and West. These experiences reveal how women, through these initiatives, have been empowered at many levels. They also show how sometimes spontaneous initiatives have paved the way towards more equality and social justice.

1- A case study from Asia: Textile industry-When cats become tigresses in Thailand!
2- A case study from the Caribbean: Banana Farming in St Vincent& the Grenadines
3- A case study from the EU: Filipino Migrant Domestic Workers fighting for their Rights in the Netherlands
4- A case study from Latin America: The Movement of Agricultural Women in Struggle (MMAL) in Argentina
5- A case study from the EU: The fight of a female worker in the supermarket chain Biedronka in Poland
6- A case study from Africa: Shea butter production in Burkina Faso
7- A case study from the Middle East: Rural women cooperatives challenge patriarchal market institutions in Lebanon

In Search of Economic Alternatives for Gender and Social Justice: Voices from India, published in 2009: “In search of economic alternatives: Voices from India”
Download: Economic Alternatives in India.

Banulacht_Looking_at_the_Economy_Through_Womens_Eyes‘, written by Maeve Taylor, Banúlacht 2004.

WIDE economic literacy in Spanish: Las Mujeres en el Mercado
Un Manual Para La Alfabetizacion Popular en Economia, WIDE, 2000.

Market WIDE, The mystery of Market Worship, WIDE, 1998.

WIDE Robinson, Robinson Crusoe and Silas Marner, or Two Stories on the Gendered Monetary Economy, WIDE, 1998.

Production WIDE, How the Cake is Cut: Production and Economic Well-being, WIDE, 1998.

Home Economics WIDE: Home Economics: Developing an Alternative Perspective, WIDE, 1998.

Economic Literacy Resources by Cafra, supported by WIDE in 2005
Beijing against WTO: against the Midwife’s Ring (pdf), Nelcia Robinson;
Corporate-led Liberalisation is Hurting the Poor: A Case of the Fox and the Stork (Fox), Nelcia Robinson;
Poverty and Gender in the Caribbean: Mother the Great Stone Got to Move (Stone) Margarette May Macaulay
Remember the Ladies: Gender and Trade in the Caribbean (Ladies), Sheila V. Stuart
With Cap in Hand: Towards Positive Fulfilment of the Millennium Development Goals (Cap), Nelcia Robinson
The Spider and the Fly: Globalisation and Trade Liberalisation Concentrating Power – Marginalising the Poor (pdf)Shantal Munroe-Knight

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