Women in development


Dr. Zilal Saari

More than forty years have passed since the 1975 Conference in Mexico and the initiation of the United Nations Decade for Women. Great theoretical strides have been made and disappointing practical returns noted. No longer is the importance of women in a development recognized only by a minority, but neither have women been effectively integrated into development planning. Women have experienced a decline in terms of health and nutrition in parts of every developing region, their educational gains so promising have slowed down and they have been confronted with new survival challenges due to structural adjustment policies.

Women’s empowerment is a key pillar driving for a long term strategic framework to ensure that all people are given the right to live in dignity and prosperity. The commitment to social and economic development via women’s empowerment has been recognized as a key tool to ensure targeted and inclusive growth with greater access to projects for Muslim women.