9 marzo 2023
by Elisa Trincia



Women and entrepreneurship, a pairing on which to focus in order to “move and give value to the creative side of the country” by networking and carrying forward all-female good practices, with one eye on innovation. This is the common thread of #madeinwomanmadeinitaly, the main Italian association of organizations that support women-owned businesses and connects a global network of partners of women entrepreneurs, managers, scholars, executives, industry leaders and innovators of all kinds. It is a real cultural change within a new female economy, on an equal footing, based on the values of sharing and sustainability.

These are the principles that led to the creation of the 'Women Entrepreneurs' postal stamp issued on March 8, and presented at the Italian Ministry of Enterprise and Made in Italy, belonging to the thematic series il Senso Civico. The image chosen shows the profile of a woman's face whose hair is made up of 13 ‘mechanical cogs’ that spell out the word Imprenditrici (Women Entrepreneurs), a tribute to female know-how and the ingenuity and cooperation of women.   At the bottom, there are the hashtags #ilfuturoedichilofa [TN: loosely translated ‘You create your future’] and #Madeinwoman Made in Italy.

The association's manifesto is based on 10 pillars for the promotion and defense of intangible values in society

The association's manifesto is based on 10 pillars for the promotion and defense of intangible values in society, such as beauty, culture, social welfare, landscape, responsibility and also the transmission of knowledge from mother to daughter to enrich our cultural heritage, our roots and our identities. But there are also more tangible elements, with adequate entrepreneurial training and specific training on the use of community funds, support and provision of services. 

The objective is to create supply chains to encourage the consolidation of local businesses and to spark virtuous processes of internationalization by pursuing the idea of an economy structured on the needs and knowledge of women. This structure will provide opportunities for impacting decision-making, starting from the way investments are made: from the management of national resources and public policies, to partnerships with international institutions.  The project began in 2015, at the time of the Milan Expo, and hasn't stopped since. The imperative repeated by #madeinwomanmadeinitaly is ‘reforms are not enough, we need to rethink a new system that unites forces, energies and skills to change the rules.’ 

The program then continued and was taken by the Stati Generali delle Donne (national forum and network for women in Italy) to Matera, the European capital of culture in January 2019, and even the lockdown couldn’t stop it, quite the contrary. “And in fact, on March 8, 2022, after intense preparatory work also in collaboration with the Fondazione del Politecnico di Milano focused on sustainability & innovation, we took #madeinwomanmadeinitaly to the Dubai Expo, in a Women's Alliance and in collaboration with Fenco, the Federation of Consuls and Ambassadors (National Federation of Diplomats and Foreign Consuls in Italy),” says Isa Maggi, the National Coordinator of the Stati Generali delle Donne.

The strengths of women-led entrepreneurship are above all reliability, care and creativity

The strengths of women-led entrepreneurship are above all reliability, care and creativity. This is the firm belief of Mirella Ferlazzo, of the Scientific Committee of the Stati Generali delle Donne, who also emphasizes the need to “encourage women to have confidence in their abilities, which is why it is important to provide guidance and support, to which we are absolutely committed, also encouraging them to network, to disseminate good practices and to open up to internationalization, which enables competitiveness, and the support of institutions is fundamental in this regard.”

Now, with the green and digital transitions on our doorstep, the desire of the association “is to help women in innovative digital enterprises because we are lagging a bit in this area,” says Ferlazzo, “in part because we need to catch up in the STEM subjects (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics), and this requires greater effort.”

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