EVN Macedonia, North Macedonia

Engendering Utilities Partner Profile

EVN Macedonia, provides energy to 812,000 customers and employs more than 1,800 professionals, of which 21 percent are women. USAID is proud to work with EVN Macedonia in their commitment to improve gender equality in the energy sector as part of their path to long-term success.

In the mid-2000s, North Macedonia’s state-owned power company was unbundled into separate generation, transmission, and distribution utilities. The Austrian company EVN took over distribution responsibilities in 2006, while two state-owned companies remain responsible for generation and transmission. More recently, North Macedonia has focused on opening the electricity market for private investment, as well as domestic and international gas pipeline networks.

Economic and political transformation in the region brought structural shifts that led to the decline of women in the workforce, including within the energy sector. The impact of this decline is still felt today; according to the International Labor Organization, only 42.3 percent of women are in the labor market, compared to 67.5 percent of men. These larger labor market changes and energy market restructurings have contributed to gender inequity within EVN Macedonia’s workforce.

USAID is partnering with EVN Macedonia through the Engendering Utilities program to assist in the development and implementation of their tailored action plan to incorporate gender equity into their business practices. EVN Macedonia’s HR specialists also took part in Engendering Utilities’ customized Gender Equity Executive Leadership (GEELP) program, in partnership with Georgetown University. The program’s capstone project required participants to address methods to integrate gender equity into the HR employee lifecycle and utilize advanced change management approaches to maximize their company’s cultural evolution. This partnership has resulted in significant and substantial progress toward a gender-equitable future for the company.

USAID’s Engendering Utilities program works with electricity and water utilities in developing countries to increase economic opportunities for women, improve gender equality, boost business performance, and strengthen the energy and water sectors. Through a customized best practices framework, demand-driven coaching, and a Gender Equity Executive Leadership Program, Engendering Utilities builds the capacity of utility leaders to implement gender equality interventions that increase the professional participation of women and meet their core business goals.

Launched in 2015, the Engendering Utilities program demonstrates USAID’s commitment to promote a path to self-reliance and resilience in developing countries by fostering enterprise-driven innovation, inclusive economic growth, and gender equality and women’s economic empowerment. Engendering Utilities is a key activity under the U.S. Government’s Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative (W-GDP), which aims to reach 50 million women by 2025 through innovative and effective programs.

Date 
Friday, February 8, 2019 - 2:00am

Last updated: March 26, 2020