A Comprehensive Framework for Gender Centrality in Financial Services
This paper argues for a framework of gender centrality in financial services. It is important to note that gender centrality does not seek to transform the underlying structural inequalities that result in the marginalization of women and limit their access to and use of financial services. Instead, it seeks to make a compelling case for policymakers, regulators, and financial service providers to focus on gender as they provide financial services.
The premise of this framework is to move away from a standard “male norm” or from merely “addressing gender” to acknowledging gender differences and their impact on women’s access and uptake of financial services. A focus on gender is not about being socially responsible alone. It is also good business, as it offers the potential to transform the female 56 percent of the world’s unbanked into active customers.
This framework can be used by researchers, product and program designers, and policy makers to improve gender equality outcomes. The gender centrality framework is a much-needed patch which integrates women's empowerment frameworks with the financial inclusion agenda.