In celebration of International Women’s Day: 8 March 2021, the Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) initiative is pleased to announce the continuation of stock exchanges around the world hosting 2021 Ring the Bell for Gender Equality initiative for the 7th consecutive year, to raise awareness for gender equality.
To organise this initiative, the SSE is working alongside the UN Global Compact, UN Women, International Finance Corporation: IFC, World Federation of Exchanges and Women in ETFs (the “Global Partners.”)
These global ‘bell ringings’ aim to bring attention to the pivotal role the private sector can play in advancing gender equality to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and to raise awareness about the Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs). They are encouraged by the fact that 25 exchanges, up from 10 in 2019, are now signatories to the WEPs as part of their commitment to promoting gender equality. SSE members are also working to scale up their actions on gender equality by promoting transparency of relevant metrics, organizing training on board diversity, and encouraging their listed companies to sign the WEPs.
This year, the UN Women’s theme for International Women’s Day 2021 – “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world” celebrates the tremendous efforts by women and girls around the world in shaping a more equal future and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Women leaders and women’s organizations have demonstrated their skills, knowledge and networks to effectively lead in COVID-19 response and recovery efforts.
Today there is more recognition than ever before that women bring different experiences, perspectives and skills to the table, and make irreplaceable contributions to decisions, policies and laws that work better for all.
IFC—a member of the World Bank Group—is the largest global development institution focused on the
private sector in emerging markets. We work in more than 100 countries, using our capital, expertise,
and influence to create markets and opportunities in developing countries.
In fiscal year 2020, we invested $22 billion in private companies and financial institutions in developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity
About Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative
The SSE initiative is a peer-to-peer learning platform for exploring how exchanges, in collaboration with
investors, regulators, and companies, can enhance corporate transparency – and ultimately performance
– on ESG (environmental, social and corporate governance) issues and encourage sustainable investment.
The SSE initiative is co-convened by four organisations – UNCTAD, UNEP FI, UNGC and PRI. To learn more
about becoming a Partner Stock Exchange or participating as a regulator or investor.
About United Nations Global Compact
As a special initiative of the UN Secretary-General, the United Nations Global Compact is a call to
companies everywhere to align their operations and strategies with ten universal principles in the areas
of human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption.
Launched in 2000, the mandate of the UN
Global Compact is to guide and support the global business community in advancing UN goals and values
through responsible corporate practices.
With more than 11,000 companies and 3,000 non-business
signatories based in over 160 countries, and 68 Local Networks, it is the largest corporate sustainability
initiative in the world.
About United Nations Entity for Gender Equality (UN Women)
UN Women is the UN organization dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global
champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs
UN Women supports UN Member States as they set global standards for achieving gender
equality, and works with governments and civil society to design laws, policies, programmes and services
needed to implement these standards. UN Women also coordinates and promotes the UN system’s work in
advancing gender equality.
About Women in ETFs
Women in ETFs is the first women’s group for the ETF industry. Founded in January 2014, WE is a non-profit
organization that brings together over 5,600 members, including women and men, in chapters in major
financial centers across the United States, Canada, EMEA and Asia Pacific to:
1. CONNECT: Create opportunities for professional advancement of women by expanding connections among women and men in the ETF industry,
2. SUPPORT: Offer guidance for the current and next generation of women in ETFs and
3. INSPIRE: WE achieves this by organizing events at our chapters globally that support our goals of education,
networking, philanthropy and idea sharing across the industry and beyond.
About World Federation of Exchanges
Established in 1961, the WFE is the global industry association for exchanges and clearing houses.
Headquartered in London, it represents over 250 market infrastructure providers. WFE exchanges are home to
nearly 48,000 listed companies, and the market capitalisation of these entities is over $74.4 trillion (at end
The WFE is the definitive source for exchange-traded statistics and publishes over 350 market data
indicators. Its statistics database stretches back more than 40 years, and provides information and insight into
developments on global exchanges.
The WFE works with standard-setters, policy makers, regulators and
government organisations around the world to support and promote the develop