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Mega Events & 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.

Programmes & Themes

Summary of Programmes and Themes

Social Protection for Informal Workers

Informal is normal. Informal employment accounts for the majority non-agricultural employment in the global South (as high asSocial protection 82 per cent in South Asia and 66 per cent in Sub-Saharan Africa) (See Women and Men in the Informal Economy, 2nd edition.)

Conceptual Framework for Social Protection for Informal Workers

A conceptual framework, developed in WIEGO’s early years, posed the core question that continues to drive the Social Protection Programme:

“Under what circumstances can which kind of workers in the informal economy (especially poorer working women) secure access to what core measures of provision, which can be incrementally improved upon in the future?”

Core elements of this framework:

• It sees social protection as an inalienable part of work.

• It focuses on women, but not to the exclusion of men.

WIEGO Special Initiatives: Past Initiatives

Collaborative Advocacy

China-India Comparative Labour Markets Research Project

From 2007-2011, in collaboration with the Institute of Development Studies (IDS), Sussex and teams of researchers in China and India, WIEGO planned a comparative research project on labour markets and informal employment, including links with poverty and other social outcomes in the two countries. Read about this project and its outputs: Informal Employment, Poverty & Growth in India & China.

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). 

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.

Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing & Organizing (WIEGO)

Home-Based Worker, Thailand


WIEGO is a global network focused on securing livelihoods for the working poor, especially women, in the informal economy. We believe all workers should have equal economic opportunities and rights.

Who We Are

Durban General Assembly

The WIEGO Network consists of individuals and institutions from three broad constituencies: