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WIEGO: 15 Years of Achievements

WIEGO: 15 Years of Achievements

In April 1997, a group of 10 activists, scholars, researchers, and development professionals who had long worked on the informal economy met in Bellagio, Italy, where they created a project they called “Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing” – WIEGO, for short.

Special Initiatives

To augment our programmes and projects, WIEGO undertakes a range of special initiatives, most focused on advancing research and expanding dialogue on the informal economy. These are designed and implemented in collaboration with members or partners from WIEGO’s constituent groups: membership-based organizations (MBOs) of informal workers, researchers and statisticians, and practitioners from development agencies (see Who We Are for more). 

Policy Dialogues

In addition to the policy dialogues organized under our core programmes and focal cities initiatives, WIEGO organizes other policies dialogues, including:

Formalizing the Informal Economy? – 2013
: WIEGO hosted this event in Montevideo, Uruguay, which saw government officials and trade unionists talk with informal worker leaders.

Waste Wise

Waste is Everyone’s Business!

Recyclers at workRecycling is one of the cheapest, fastest ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Mega Events & the Urban Working Poor

Mega Events and the Urban Working Poor

This work aims to understand the multifaceted impact of mega events on the working poor and to publicize these findings.

Pat Horn of StreetNet addresses International Trade Union Confederation about mega events and their impact on informal workers.

Enhancing Productivity in the Urban Informal Economy

Enhancing Productivity in the Urban Informal Economy

In 2015 – 2016 the WIEGO Network participated in the Habitat III process, with the objective to make visible the contributions of urban informal workers to cities, and advocate for inclusive urban policies.

Tribute to Sharit Bowmik

Sharit Bhowmik: Scholar, Activist, Ally, Colleague and Friend

Sharit Bowmik

On September 8th, 2016, Sharit Bhowmik passed away. Sharit was a close friend, colleague and ally of WIEGO. For several years, in the early 2000s, he served as Director of WIEGO’s Urban Policies Program.

Associação da Economia Informal de Moçambique (AEIMO)

Associação da Economia Informal de Moçambique (AEIMO)

The Informal Economy Association of Mozambique (Associação da Economia Informal de Moçambique, AEIMO) in Mozambique was founded in 1999.  As of 2012, AEIMO had more than 4200 members.  Most of AEIMO’s members are street traders, but a small percentage of the members come from other informal worker sectors.

AEIMO’s objectives are to:

Ghana Health Policy Dialogue

Impact: Marginalized Workers Gain Healthcare Access

View all WIEGO Network impact stories.


A Health Policy Dialogue held in Accra, Ghana on July 26, 2012 resulted in over 1,000 head porters, known as kayayei in Ghana, gain access to health care services through the Ghanaian National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).