Jing Zhang, who represents The Women’s Organisation and Enterprise Evolution in China, has beat off fierce competition to participate in a pioneering project that aims to explore the challenges associated with women’s entrepreneurship in the US.
Project organisers welcomed applicants from across the globe, all eager and qualified to be involved. Jing made the cut of only 25 final participants from hundreds and is the only Chinese national on the project team. She joins representatives from Egypt, Algeria, Jordon, UAE, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Tunisia, India, Cambodia, and the US.
Jing will take part in the study over a period of three weeks and during that time will meet with representatives from the US Department of State as well as FHI 360 – a non-profit human development organization dedicated to improving lives in lasting ways by advancing integrated, locally driven solutions – to discuss objectives.
Women and Entrepreneurship II (NEA/SCA/EAP) – An Inter-Regional Project will examine examples of entrepreneurial efforts in the United States, particularly those initiated or managed by women.
It aims to explore social, economic and political factors that influence and encourage the development of women’s enterprise and discuss strategies to overcome existing societal barriers.
Representatives will discuss specific mechanisms used by the Burton D. Morgan Foundation to support racial equity projects and girls and women-led businesses. The overall objective is to empower women in business to aspire, scale, innovate and grow.
Jing says: “I am incredibly honoured to be a participant in the programme. I feel it is perhaps more important than ever to champion women’s entrepreneurship and remove existing barriers that are preventing women from starting up or succeeding in business.
“The last 18 months has been a terribly tumultuous time for everyone. But for women in particular, the pandemic presented a plethora of challenges with regards to their health and safety, their homes, and their work. We have seen a whole lot of historic economic challenges re-emerging – some we have spent decades trying to overcome.
“Women have been hit hardest with regards to their work, as COVID-19 disproportionately affected industry sectors in which women are typically overrepresented. Additionally, the gender pay gap has widened and women are on a backfoot in terms of career progression due to mounting care responsibilities.
“We know from monitoring the number of enquiries we have received at The Women’s Organisation that women are eager to start up in business and remain economically active despite those challenges – it’s incredibly heartening.
“So it is my hope that this project might play a part in removing barriers for women in business, so that they can progress and prosper and help drive our economic recovery post-pandemic.”
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