UN Women's mandate on the care economy

The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) is the UN agency mandated to accelerate progress on gender equality and address the needs of women worldwide. UN Women supports Member States in setting and implementing global standards for achieving gender equality and coordinates gender-related work within the United Nations. UN Women's Strategic Plan focuses on four thematic outcomes: promoting women's leadership; women's economic empowerment; women's engagement in peace, security and humanitarian action; and ending violence against women and girls. In parallel with these four thematic results, to address the root causes of gender inequality, UN Women, in collaboration with other actors, contributes to seven systemic results, including: strengthening global normative frameworks and gender-responsive laws, policies and institutions; financing the promotion of gender equality; women's equitable access to services, goods and resources; and the production, analysis and use of gender statistics, sex-disaggregated data and knowledge.

In the area of women's economic empowerment, UN Women works to promote the economic advancement of women so that they enjoy income security, decent work and economic autonomy. In particular, UN Women partners with a wide range of stakeholders, including governments, the United Nations system, civil society, women's and youth organizations and the private sector in : promoting  (i) women's access to jobs and finance in the green and blue economy; (ii) women's entrepreneurship and public procurement opportunities for women-led businesses; (iii) improving women's income security and social protection and (iv) formulating and implementing gender-responsiveeconomic policies.

The new Women’s Economic Empowerment Strategy launched in 2024 articulates UN Women’s vision for enabling women’s economic agency, autonomy and well-being. Anchored in UN Women’s Strategic Plan 2022–2025 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, its objective is to provide a framework that galvanizes internal and external stakeholders to work together at the local, national and global level through transformative solutions that improve the lives of women and girls with no one left behind. It identifies three key priority areas, or Gender Equality Accelerators (GEAs), where UN Women can make the most progress: (i) women and the world of work, (ii) gender-responsive climate action and (iii) transforming care systems.


UN Women’s work on the Care Economy in West and Central Africa


According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), by 2030, an estimated 2.3 billion people will require care, including children, individuals with disabilities, and the elderly. In Sub-Sahara Africa, women spend on average 3.5 times more on unpaid care and domestic work per day than men. Unpaid care work is essential for vibrant and sustainable economies and societies. However, in West and Central Africa (WCA), the unequal distribution of unpaid care work where limited infrastructure, particularly in rural areas, and rigid social norms, aggravates inequalities between men and women in time spent conducting care work.

Unpaid care work limits participation in the workforce, especially for mothers. Around the world, 606 million women of working age have stated they cannot hold employment due to unpaid care work, while only 41 million men are inactive for the same reason. When we compare the employment-to-population ratio of mothers to fathers of children (aged 0–5) on the African continent, we see that 59.4 percent of women are employed, versus 81.3 percent of men. The time spent by women on domestic and care tasks is one of the most important constraints they face in running their businesses or advancing in their professional careers as employees, thereby holding back their economic empowerment.

Convinced that women's economic empowerment ultimately depends on the amount of unpaid care work borne by women, UN Women catalyzes efforts to recognize, reduce and redistribute unpaid care work to address structural barriers to women's full and equal participation in the economy. To this end, UN Women identifies strategic entry points for policies and programs, as well as the tools needed to transform the care economy to promote women's economic empowerment and gender equality.

To help inform policymaking to address the issue of unpaid care work and the care economy in general, the UN Women West and Central Africa Regional Office is launching the first-ever Care Factsheets.

The Care Factsheets are the most comprehensive assessment of the state of women’s unpaid care work and the care economy in selected WCA countries. It will provide an overview of the various policies implemented by governments to recognize, reduce, and redistribute it (reforms, service, infrastructure, investments...), make the business, economic, and social case for investing in the care economy, and offer action-oriented recommendations for policymakers, researchers, civil society and other stakeholders.

The Care Factsheets will guide UN Women and its partners in assisting policymakers in developing high-quality, sustainable care policies, services, and innovative solutions to maximize efforts to boost women’s economic empowerment and foster inclusive growth.


Duties and Responsibilities

Description of Responsibilities/Scope of Work

Scope of the tasks

The consultant(s) shall deliver the following services:

  • Develop 3 country care factsheets for Ghana, Liberia and Nigeria using:
  •  The thematic scope is detailed in the attached methodological concept note. The consultants shall follow the outline proposed in the scope.
  • Data collection phase:
  • Desk review of listed documentation and secondary data
  • Interview with key stakeholders working on the care economy in each country, including national economists at the Country Offices implicated in the research (National economists in place in Liberia, Nigeria, and Regional Office)
  • Data analysis, reporting, writing:
  • The consultants will gain support from the technical expertise of the UN Women Regional Office WEE Unit (leading the work on care in the region), the Regional Office Gender Statistics Unit (for data on gender statistics) and the national economists at the Country offices


Deliverables and duration of the assignment

The work is expected to start 15 June 2024 and be finalized by 31 December 2024. The expected amount of time on this assignment is 30 days, with the majority of the work taking place in June and July.




Deliverable 1: Inception report

  • Kick-off meeting held and report submitted
  • Workplan and methodology submitted, revised based on UN Women’s comments, and approved


Within 5 days of signing the contract

Deliverable 2: Draft of three factsheets submitted, revised based on UN Women’s comments, and approved.

(Ghana, Liberia and Nigeria)

15 days

(June-July 2024)

Deliverable 3:  Final factsheets

Document submitted, revised based on UN Women’s comments, and approved

8 days

(July – August 2024)


Deliverable 4:

  • Prepare PowerPoint with final results and participation in at least two policy dialogue meetings or webinars to present results
  • Provide input into the designed version of the factsheets/ regional products

2 days

(October - November 2024)


30 days


Consultant’s Workplace and Official Travel

This is a home-based consultancy. Meetings for this assignment will take place online.  The consultant may travel for project-related restitution workshops. Costs of project-related travel will be covered by UN Women.

Note conceptuelle :



Core Values: 

  • Respect for Diversity 
  • Integrity 
  • Professionalism 

Core Competencies: 

  • Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues 
  • Accountability 
  • Creative Problem Solving 
  • Effective Communication 
  • Inclusive Collaboration 
  • Stakeholder Engagement 
  • Leading by Example 

Please visit this link for more information on UN Women’s Core Values and Competencies: 



  • Strong analytical skills on gender and economic policy and women's economic empowerment;
  • Strong communication skills in English.
  • Strong writing skills and ability to produce a variety of knowledge products for different audiences and objectives.
  • Ability to produce impactful communication materials and knowledge products.
  • Strong commitment to knowledge sharing, stakeholder engagement, and partnerships building in a multicultural environment.

Required Skills and Experience

Education and Certification:

  • Master in international development, statistics, economics, social sciences, gender studies, or related field
  • PhD in similar fields is an asset


  • Proven experience of at least 7 years in qualitative and/or quantitative research and gender policy analysis in the areas of social protection, unpaid care work, employment, and women's economic empowerment.
  • Experience conducting similar assignments on care economy and women’s unpaid care work and their link to women's economic empowerment
  • Experience conducting similar assignments in West and Central Africa or sub-Saharan Africa


  • Fluency in English is required.
  • Knowledge of French is an asset.

How to Apply 



In July 2010, the United Nations General Assembly created UN Women, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women. The creation of UN Women came about as part of the UN reform agenda, bringing together resources and mandates for greater impact. It merges and builds on the important work of four previously distinct parts of the UN system (DAW, OSAGI, INSTRAW and UNIFEM), which focused exclusively on gender equality and women's empowerment.

Diversity and inclusion

At UN Women, we are committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment of mutual respect. UN Women recruits, employs, trains, compensates, and promotes regardless of race, religion, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, ability, national origin, or any other basis covered by appropriate law. All employment is decided on the basis of qualifications, competence, integrity and organizational need.

If you need any reasonable accommodation to support your participation in the recruitment and selection process, please include this information in your application.

UN Women has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UN Women, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to UN Women’s policies and procedures and the standards of conduct expected of UN Women personnel and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. (Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.