Yunus Centre of Social Business, VESIM hosts ‘Skilling for Women’ roundtable conference

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Mumbai: The Yunus Centre of Social Business, Vivekanand Education Society Institute of Management (VESIM), one of the leading B Schools in Mumbai organized a roundtable meet on ‘Skilling for Women: Promoting Social Entrepreneurship for Women in Rural India’ in Mumbai. Through this event, the Yunus Centre of Social Business, VESIM aims to push for skilling as a development strategy to solve Indian women’s socio-economic woes.

The contribution of Indian women to the GDP today stands at only 17%, which is less than half the global average. The Government recently launched several skill promotion schemes to address this and abridge this gap to match global standards. At the roundtable, 20 eminent speakers from various institutions discussed, debated and probed on enriching dialogue revolving around social entrepreneurship, bridging inequalities, scalability of ventures by rural women, problems with self-help groups, geography and cultural relevance in upskilling rural women etc.

Few takeaways from the event:

By making women socially inclusive, financially independent and develop social capital one can ensure women from rural areas who aren’t educated to transform. Current skill development isn’t of their choice; it needs to be tailored to be of relevance and of interest to them.

An action plan needs to be made to address the problems of registration of business, scalability to national level, lack of communication of risk management, difficulty with technology etc.

India hasn’t been able to accurately document grassroots level problems hence a different assessment of rural women capacity needs to be implemented.

Demographic diversity should be considered an important factor in skill development.

When it comes to implementation of the SHG’s, corporates can be roped in. A committee with representatives from academics, businessmen and NGO’s can execute a concrete plan to uplift them with a successful PPP model.
Commenting on the roundtable Dr. Satish Modh, Director, VESIM, Mumbai said, “There is a need for Management Institutes to focus on Social Entrepreneurship and the role of women in running such businesses. It is a rough estimate that nearly 40% of employment generation happens in this sector which is highly neglected by policy makers. Such Roundtable would bring attention to these issues.”

Dr. Shashank Shah, Consulting Editor, Business India Group and Visiting Scholar, Harvard Business School delivered a presentation on how to develop capacity building, social innovation and knowledge creation in the handicraft and handloom sector.