March 8 marks the International Women’s Day 2014 and while Google, World Bank and Forbes are honoring women entrepreneurs, the United Nations’ theme for this year is “equality for women is progress for all.” Google has decided to show over 100 mothers, wives, daughters from across the globe in a 80-second video, including children’s character Dora The Explorer. At the same time, the World Bank has decided to celebrate the International Women’s Day 2014 by launching a $600 million “Women Entrepreneurs Opportunity Facility,” a programme which supports small businesses owned by female entrepreneurs.
The 106th annual event is characterized by programmes designed to make the world a better fit for female executives and debunk the myth according to which businesses are generally led by men. “Google for Entrepreneurs” and “The Women Entrepreneurs Opportunity Facility” represent a new definition for the word “empowerment,” especially since Forbes also pointed out that female executives have taken the list of the World Billionaires by storm. As a result, Google and the World Bank are now honoring women entrepreneurs on Women’s Day 2014.
Although women still represent a small minority on Forbes’ list of billionaires, the fact that they have become a constant presence at the helm of major companies have strengthened Dalai Lama’s quote, which gave western women a leading role in saving the world. One example of a powerful woman is NASA’s Deputy Director, Lori Garver who started with an administrative role and was offered an executive position after five years. Women’s Day 2014 is also about the feminine faces of Yahoo, HP and General Motors, and about the Navy’s first woman admiral, Michelle Howard, but most of all, it is about the working women across the world.
Google and World Bank Support Women
Google and the World Bank honor women entrepreneurs on Women’s Day 2014 in order to prove that the world needs their skills, especially since the International Finance Corp announced via a press release that women-owned enterprises are experiencing an estimated $300 billion credit gap.
“Google for Entrepreneurs” aims at finding new ways to give female entrepreneurs the boost they need in order to play a more active role in the business world. As a result, the tech giant is committing $1 million to 40 startup-focused organisations, just in time for Women’s Day 2014. With this project, Google is set to promote women’s participation in the technology space. In order to prove that women are becoming more interested in technology, Berkley announced that more female students enrolled in Computer Science than male learners and Stanford’s same class reached near gender parity in 2012.
The World Bank’s programme which infuses $600 million to support economic opportunities for women is kicking off a global project of honoring female entrepreneurs. The gift comes right in the middle of celebrating Women’s Day 2014 and it has been accompanied by the IFC, which also invested $100 million and expects to collect $468 million from private and public investors and Goldman Sachs Foundation’s “10,000 Women” programme, which offered $32 million.
In order to prove that Google and the World Bank are not the only institutions that honor women entrepreneurs on Women’s Day 2014, Korea is designing a similar project and 20 developing countries’ finance ministers adopted a work plan in February to boost women’s participation in the workplace, according to Christine LaGarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund. LaGarde also stated that if these dynamics are changed, a country can boost its GDP by minimum seven percent and can go as high as 27 percent; numbers are determined by the country’s starting point.
Google and the World Bank, along with the IFC and other institutions are honoring women entrepreneurs and their important share in a country’s economy on Women’s Day 2014.
By Gabriela Motroc