Over the past 20 years, the microfinance industry has seen increases in women’s membership, accumulation of savings, and access to loans. Credit unions have recognized the profitability of introducing women-responsive products, which improves client service and increases the ability of women to drive economic development in their communities. However, women are still under-represented in management and leadership positions. The advancement of women’s leadership will further global wellbeing and increase the capability of women to influence decision-making in their organizations.
This brief discusses a study by the World Council of Credit Unions which studied the barriers to and prevalence of women in leadership positions in Mexican credit unions, and identified patterns of obstacles and attributes from their case histories. By identifying and addressing leadership constraints, the study stimulates and supports greater development of women into management and leadership roles in the credit union system and contributes to the reduction of gender disparities, access to opportunities, and promotes women’s economic growth.
This “FIELD Brief” is the 22nd in a series of briefs produced by the USAID-funded FIELD-Support LWA Program. Managed by FHI 360, FIELD-Support represents a consortium of organizations committed to advancing the state-of-the-practice of microfinance and microenterprise development through innovation, learning, and exploration.