The Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
2201 C Street N.W.
Washington, DC 20520
Dear Madam Secretary:
The International Council on Women’s Business Leadership (ICWBL) appreciates the Administration’s policy to engage the private sector for women’s economic empowerment and business leadership.
Women are empowered to start new or grow existing businesses with the support of policies and practices in the private and public sector.
The ICWBL and its Subcommittee on Capacity Building and Skills Training has defined three core recommendations that work along a continuum to help women grow their businesses 1) gain critical skills in business and entrepreneurship training – with a focus on agriculture and technology (ICT), 2) connect to mentors who can continue to guide and advise as their business’ develop, and 3) transform into qualified suppliers, providing direct access to specific corporate supply chains. To support capacity building and skills training for entrepreneurship, key areas of focus should be agriculture, technology and supply chain optimization.
Each of these recommendations leverages the strategy and infrastructure of existing programs. This is a three-phased approach whereby one program builds on the strength of another. In this way, progress in the first effort will be enhanced by the second, and so on. In addition, this approach will contribute toward long-term sustainability.
We recommend three programs with a phased approach:
We also recommend policies and practices that support:
We advocate for more research on issues around women’s entrepreneurship. There is a critical lack of data in this area. Specifically, more research around access and usage of technology (specifically, ICT) and its impact on women entrepreneurs is essential to developing high-impact interventions.
Vice Chair ICWBL
Vice Chair ICWBL
Sub-Committee Chair ICWBL