Organization & Representation in the Informal Economy

Pr Page Block: Statistics

Pr Page Block: Global Trade

Pr page Block: Social Protection

Pr Page Block: Urban Policies

Core Programmes

WIEGO's Core Programmes  For each of its programme areas, WIEGO commissions issues papers to identify programme, research and policy priorities. It then convenes workshops of grassroots, research and policy actors. Collaborating institutions and individuals undertake component activities.

Organization and Representation

WIEGO works with grassroots organizations and international networks of informal workers, such as HomeNet South and South East Asia and StreetNet International to strengthen organizing capacity and and to increase the visibility and voice of women in the informal economy. WIEGO also works with international trade union organizations and tries to put informal sector workers on the agenda of governments and international organizations.


The WIEGO Statistics Programme seeks to develop statistics on the informal economy as an essential component of mainstream or official statistics at national, regional and international levels. The Programme contributes to improving classifications, concepts and methods for data collection and for estimating the contribution of informal employment to national economies It also encourages countries to collect and improve data on these topics.

Another aim of the programme is to prepare statistical data and analysis on the size, composition and contribution of the informal economy and the characteristics and situation of those who work in it available to policymakers, researchers and advocates in easily accessible formats. It also promotes data-based research on informal sector, informal employment and related topics.

Law and the Informal Economy

WIEGO launched the Programme on Law and Informal Employment in October 2015. The programme aims to analyze and improve legal and regulatory frameworks for informal workers; and to empower workers’ organizations to fight for their recognition and rights as workers, on a local and international level. The programme builds on the work achieved by the Law and the Informal Economy Project.

Social Protection

Few informal workers - whether waged or self-employed - have access to social benefits such as health insurance, materity benefits, disability compensation, and retirement promotion. WIEGO's Social Protection Programme promotes innovative approaches to extend social protection to women working in the informal economy.

Urban Policies

WIEGO's Urban Policies Programme seeks to understand, highlight, and address how different functional areas of urban planning, policies, and regulations affect different categories of urban informal workers. Additionally, the Programme works to correct the public policy bias against street vendors and establish their right to vend. The programme also works to improve services for street vendors and helps them to organize themselves and present their concerns to city planners.

Special Initiatives

In addition to the five programme areas, WIEGO also works on activities more generally related to the informal economy which are detailed in the special initiatives  section. These activities also include cross-programmatic collaborations.