Partners: World Resources Institute (WRI) India
After agriculture, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) are the principal sector engaging the female labour force in India. About 20.37% of the total MSME enterprises in India are currently owned and operated by women, several of which operate on a micro-scale in rural locations. Women’s entrepreneurship is particularly higher in states like West Bengal and Tamil Nadu, but their participation in the MSME workforce continues to remain persistently lower, as compared to other developing countries. In sectors like agriculture, women have typically borne a greater brunt of climate change impacts, and if measures are not taken to address their needs, they may continue to be left behind in the ongoing transitions in the MSME sector.
Sijo John, Senior Program Manager, LEAD at Krea University participated in a webinar convened by WRI India and shared insights on the MSME sector with a focus on responding to the needs of women entrepreneurs and workers.
The panel featured policymakers and practitioners including:
- Sunaina Kumar, Senior Fellow, ORF and Executive Director at Think20 India Secretariat (Moderator)
- Uma Mahadevan Dasgupta, Additional Chief Secretary, Rural Development & Panchayati Raj, Govt. of Karnataka
- Michelle Armstrong, Executive Director, Ares Charitable Foundation
- Anubha Prasad, Assistant General Manager, SIDBI
- Sharmila Barathan, President-Corporate Affairs & Policy, General Electric South Asia
- Shikha Joshi, SEWA Bharat
- Ankita Saxena, Pratibha Syntex
The discussion spotlighted experiences from the MSME sector and deliberated on how to support women entrepreneurs and workers to strengthen their resilience to climate change.