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WIEGO
Program(s): Special Initiatives

Rethinking Formalization

The WIEGO Perspective

Formalization of the informal economy can take different forms: registration, taxation, organization and representation, legal frameworks, social protection, business incentives/support, and more. And formalization means different things to different categories of the informal workforce.

What is required is an approach to formalization of the informal economy that is comprehensive in design but context-specific in practice.

Policy Dialogues

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

A policy dialogue involves people from different interest groups sitting together to focus on an issue in which they have a mutual, but not necessarily common, interest. It assumes that people in different positions and circumstances will have different perspectives on the same problem and that they may have access to different information and ideas about the issue.

Cornell-SEWA-WIEGO Exposure Dialogue Programme

Oaxaca Mexico EDPFrom 2004 - 2011, WIEGO co-organized a series of Exposures and Dialogues with Cornell University and the Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) of India. The initiative promoted a dialogue between mainstream economists from Cornell, activists from SEWA, and researchers from the WIEGO Network.

Special Initiatives: Research

WIEGO 20th Anniversary Research Conference

In its first two decades, WIEGO has been at the forefront of developing new concepts and methods for understanding and measuring the informal economy. To mark WIEGO’s 20th Anniversary, and to identify new paths for research and thinking on the informal economy, the WIEGO Network held a research conference at Harvard University in the USA in November 2018.

Informality, Poverty & Growth: Labour Markets In China & India

Research Design Workshop, April, 2007, Harvard University

Hosted by Asia Center, Harvard University

WIEGO Special Initiatives: Past Initiatives

WIEGO Special Initiatives:
Past Initiatives

Collaborative Advocacy

China-India Comparative Labour Markets Research Project

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). 

UNIFEM’s Progress of the World’s Women 2005: Women, Work & Poverty

UNIFEM (now called UN Women) asked WIEGO to write the 2005 issue of Progress of the World’s Women – UNIFEM’s biennial flagship publication– on the topic of “Women, Work, and Poverty.” Officially launched at the United Nations on September 16, 2005 to coincide with the Millennium Development Summit, the publication focuses on employment, especially informal employment, as a key pathway to reducing poverty and gender inequality.

Policy Dialogues

What is a Policy Dialogue?

A Policy Dialogue involves people from different interest groups sitting around one table to focus on an issue in which they have a mutual – but not necessarily common – interest. It assumes that people in different positions will have different perspectives on the same problem. For example:

Accra Street Traders Make Their Concerns Heard by Municipal Officials

In March 2013, a Policy Dialogue was held in Accra, Ghana between informal street traders and officials from the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) and the Ga East Municipal Assembly. Facilitated by WIEGO, the policy dialogue centred on the theme Ensuring Optimal Involvement of the Urban Informal Sector in National Economic Development. It was deemed a success in bringing the traders’ concerns to the attention of the authorities and sparking opportunities to engage further.