The 2011 World Bank-IMF Annual Meetings  get under way next week with a full slate of discussions, webcasts and seminars planned around two issues critical to sustaining economic growth – gender and jobs.
In a world where women make up the majority of unpaid workers, and only 15% of landowners and one in five lawmakers are women, there’s a lot to talk about.
Bank President Robert Zoellick set the tone for the Sept. 23-25 meetings yesterday, with a speech  on a world “Beyond Aid,” in which he addressed the need to eliminate gender inequality.
But there’s more ahead. Bank experts will add their voices on gender, jobs and development issues on this blog over the next ten days, and we’ll report on meetings sessions you may have missed. Many events will be webcast, so watch the Bank home page for a daily schedule.
A few highlights to watch for:
- Release of the 2012 World Development Report  on gender equality and development (Sept. 18)
- A Bank Open Forum, Gender: Getting to Equal , on issues affecting girls and women worldwide. The forum will include a 24-hour live, online chat and webcast panel debate, hosted by CNN International’s Hala Gorani. Submit your ideas  on ways to overcome gender equality now. (Sept. 20-21)
- A global development debate on Jobs and Opportunities for All , to include participants from Jordan, Kenya, Mexico and Uganda. Watch our webcast on Sept. 22.
- Toward a New Social Contract in the Arab World —a live panel discussion, webcast and online chat on Sept. 22. Submit your questions now.
- A panel discussion and webcast on Realizing the Demographic Dividend , to include Melinda Gates and Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala. (Sept. 24)
We’re also asking for your engagement to increase awareness on gender inequality. Learn about the Bank’s “Think Equal ” campaign, launched this week. Take our gender poll . Spread the word  on social media. It’s time to increase women’s economic opportunity.
It’s time to think EQUAL.
Feature: Making Equality a Reality
Video Playlist: ThinkEqual
Blog: What Does Equal Mean to You?