Lenny Nurharyanti Rosalin, SE, M.Sc, M.Fin is the Deputy Minister for Gender Equality, at the Ministry of Women Empowerment and Child Protection, Indonesia. She holds a master’s degree with dual specialization in Monetary Economy and Financial Investment from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Illinois, USA.
Closing the Digital Gender Divide: What’s Next for Indonesia’s Digital Economy?
The world is experiencing a digital revolution and anticipating its potential to improve women’s empowerment. However, studies found that women are still struggling to enter the digital ecosystem due to many factors. This blog—previously published as an op-ed piece at The Jakarta Post—outlines women’s limited participation in the digital economy and the policy recommendations to close the digital gender gap. MSC participated in drafting these policy recommendations and discussed them in detail at the G20 Ministerial Conference on Women’s Empowerment (MCWE) in Bali in August 2022.
Transitioning the informal economy to a formal one
Developing countries often prioritize the formalization of enterprises in their MSME development policies. The benefits of formalization include increased access to credit, higher productivity, and better social protection, while governments gain from a higher tax base. However, informality continues to persist despite these apparent benefits. This blog stresses on the need to modulate our approach to formalization of the informal economy and explores three principles on how the digital economy can enable this process.
Designing adaptive worker protections for the digital economy
The rapid digitization of work in the informal economy offers an opportunity to increase women’s participation in the labor force. However, women continue to grapple with a disproportionate burden of unpaid work at home. Thus, any tangible increase in women’s participation in the labor market will call for adequate social protections that reduce this burden. This blog discusses the importance of reimagining the social protection architecture for the digital economy.
Women in the digital economy
The COVID-19 pandemic carved out a prominent role for digital technologies in enabling economic transactions. However, the gender divide in access to digital technologies hurts women’s ability to participate in the labor force. This blog explores the nature of women’s work and how digitization shapes it. We outline the opportunities and challenges in the digital economy and offer recommendations to ensure a fair digital economy for women.