Women and SDG 8: Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all

SDG-8 aspires to promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, higher levels of productivity and technological innovation by 2030. Vital accompanying targets are full and productive employment and decent work (equally paid) for all - men, women, young people and persons with disabilities.

The direct link of SDG-8 to SDG-5 is very well documented: According to a World Bank’s study in 100 countries, every 1 % increase in the number of women with a secondary education produces an increase of 0.3 percentage points in the country’s annual per capita income growth rate. So far, on average women still work at lower rates than men globally. A lack of education as well as gender stereotypes in many countries channel women into vulnerable and low-paid jobs. Additionally, among 143 countries, at least 90 % have some legal restriction on women’s employment.

Experts say that if women’s paid employment rates were raised to the same level as men’s, per capita income in developing economies would rise by 20 % by 2030. Moreover, in an inclusive economy, decent work does not only mean a living wage, but also workplace safety and protection against discrimination. Surveys show that once women gain equal access to productive resources and an equal voice in economic decisions, they strive to work towards positive social change such as fairer societies and higher sustainability of economic growth.

Felicitas Heyne


Psychologist and Co-Founder of Audiopedia Foundation