Breakout Session Day 3

Women, Work and Peace

30 October 2020 | 10:00 – 11:30 IST

Lead Partner & Co-host: SEWA


The world of work is undergoing profound changes… and the current Covid-19 crisis has infact fast-forwarded us by almost 5 years… making the future of work now… but what does this entail for the poor workers from the informal economy – especially the women workers? What kind of skills? What kind of universal social protection? What new forms of livelihoods?

In our experience, organizing women workers from the informal economy, we have realized that women are the backbone of an informal workers’ household… and for them… Work is a healer… We have seen that in spite of being affected by disasters like earthquakes, floods, riots or even the current Covid disaster, women demand work and not relief packages… because with work and income security in their hands, Women want to rebuild the lives and livelihoods. So how do we build sustainable economies that are inclusive of the informal workers?

And at SEWA, we strongly believe that the answer to the question of sustainability and resilience of these tiny micro-entrepreneurs is in promoting decentralized local economies – the 100-mile communities. Such 100-miles communities shall focus on the impact of work on the worker, his or her family, and on the society. The Future of Work in such communities will have the co-relation between work and worker as basis. It will rope in technology that augments / nurtures this co-relation… Overlapping of several such local decentralized economies shall lead to what we, at SEWA, call “Building Economy of Nurturance”

Through the current session topic, SEWA proposes to engage eminent economists and experts into discussion on the “Ensuring sustainability and resilience to informal sector workers by promoting an inclusive Economy of Nurturance”

Session Objectives:

  • Engage eminent scholars and economist in discussion on “Ensuring sustainability and resilience of economic enterprises of the poor women” to discuss and deliberate upon

    • which are the business models that integrate informal workers higher into the value chain – thus build an Economy of Nurturance – as against an economy that thrives on cut-throat competition…
    • Role of informal workers as central in the peace building process
    • Bringing about a shift in approach of various stakeholders from one looks at engaging with the informal workers as a gesture of generosity to act of justice


Reema Nanavaty

Self Employed Women's Association (SEWA)

Dr. Ravi Kanbur

Professor of World Affairs, International Professor of Applied Economics and Management, and Professor of Economics
Cornell University

Prof. Indira Hirway

Director and Professor
Centre for Development Alternatives (CFDA)

Ela Bhatt

Self-Employed Women's Association of India

Margie Sastry


Isabel Guerrero Pulgar

IMAGO Global Grassroots