Care Economy and Gender-Transformative Social Protection in India and the G20 Countries

By taking a gender-transformative and a rights-based entitlement approach, this Policy Brief stresses the importance of investing in the care economy within the context of COVID-19 recovery plans, the G20 agenda of striving for just and equitable growth, and India’s Vision 2047. Ensuring greater gender equality in the distribution of paid and unpaid work can be socially transformative and enhance gross domestic product. This Brief explores inequality within the care economy in India, specifically focusing on the unpaid care work, paid work, and paid care work circles, and their negative impacts. It further describes the challenges and importance of investing in care, with a particular focus on childcare provision. This Brief recommends positioning care as a fundamental pillar of a lifecycle social protection system and economic growth trajectories, with investment in the provision of care services as a public good provided by the state.