The Women's Organisation (formally Train 2000 Ltd), supported by its partners Liverpool City Council and Liverpool Vision, are developing the Women's International Centre for Economic Development (WICED) - a key innovator and deliverer of women's enterprise services.
The Women's Organisation (formally Train 2000 Ltd), supported by its partners Liverpool City Council and Liverpool Vision, have developed the Women's International Centre for Economic Development (WICED) which is a key innovator and deliverer of women's enterprise services. The Women's Organisation are seeking to build on our success in reaching and delivering quality gendered economic development support to a wider audience of women; service developments and geographical reach by addressing the issue of scale and scope of future service design and provision.
The body of published research and experience to date demonstrates the need for a coordinated approach to women's social and economic development policy, research and practice. The development of our centre will play a critical part in achieving current UK Government and EU priorities by contributing to greater financial independence for women, improved equality of opportunity in terms of enterprise and employment, greater community involvement, reduction in family poverty and the provision of role models for other women across the UK, whilst also contributing to the evidence base and future policy through the our International Research Hub.
The evidence base recommends the implementation of gendered and transformational models of female enterprise support, which complement generalist transactional models. Transformational models represent a significant departure from traditional transactional offerings as they provide demand led gendered entrepreneurial services. In effect, transformational models are configured through female entrepreneurial need as opposed to service provider supply based models.
The Women's Organisation transformational model comprises three key components:
- Women's Economic Research and Knowledge Hub
- The Women's Organisation are developing an internationally renowned research and knowledge centre on women's enterprise and wider economic development issues which will exploit a growing publicly procured research market on female social and economic development issues.
- Women's Entrepreneurship and Economic Development Service
- The Women's Organisation delivers high quality gender-focused economic development and business support programmes concentrating on enterprise culture, leadership, start up, green and knowledge economy enterprises, innovation, growth and sustainability, commissioned through public sector partners.
- Women focussed incubation facility
- The Women's Organisation have developed a 2000 sq m state of the art facility housing up to 50 incubation spaces for new and high growth women enterprises. This will be the most significant development of its kind not only in Europe but globally.
This is a flagship initiative, creating the conditions and infrastructure for Liverpool's City Region and the North West of England to become the key driver of women's economic development.
Transforming Women's Enterprise
We have established a high profile Centre which will contribute to:
- The development of a knowledge base that supports gender equality work within and outside public sector and civil institutions.
- The integration into world-wide networks and developing global collaborations and knowledge exchange.
- Convening communities of women entrepreneurs; public and third sector practitioners and world class academics to ensure global knowledge transfer mechanisms on business led agendas.
- Positioning Liverpool as a city that is friendly to women in business.
- Developing a women's enterprise culture that will build upon the local Economic Review 2007 figures that show a positive trend in female entrepreneurship. "Female TEA activity is significantly higher in Merseyside (3.9%) than in the comparator districts which have TEA activity amongst women of just 2.2%. Although the breakdowns are not statistically significant, no City has a level of TEA above 2.6".
- Accelerating the start-up, diversity and sustainability of indigenous women-owned businesses by providing gender-friendly business support and developing highly skilled and customer focused managers within those businesses.
- Developing women's participation in quality employment to support a competitive, market driven business environment.
- Showing innovation in partnership working with public, private and third sector organisations.