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The Double X Economy

The Epic Potential of Women's Empowerment

Linda Scott


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ISBN10: 1250798558
ISBN13: 9781250798558

Trade Paperback

384 Pages



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Winner of the Porchlight Business Book Awards
Shortlisted for the Royal Society Science Book Prize

Linda Scott coined the phrase “Double X Economy” to address the systemic exclusion of women from the world financial order. In The Double X Economy, Scott argues on the strength of hard data and on-the-ground experience that removing those barriers to women’s success is a win for everyone, regardless of gender. Scott opens our eyes to the myriad economic injustices that constrain women throughout the world: fathers buying and selling daughters against their will; husbands burning brides whose dowries have been spent; men appropriating women’s earnings and widows’ land; banks discriminating against women applying for loans; corporations paying women less than men; men treating women as their intellectual inferiors due to primitive notions of female brain development; governments depriving women of affordable childcare; and so much more.

As Scott takes us from the streets of Accra, where sex trafficking is widespread, to American business schools, where women are routinely patronized, the pervasiveness of the Double X Economy becomes glaringly obvious. But Scott believes that this rampant problem can be solved. She proposes concrete actions and urges her readers to rise up and join the global movement for women’s economic empowerment that is gaining momentum by the day.


Praise for The Double X Economy

"Scott’s narrative makes clear that the whole population, not just half, matters for the global economy."—Heather Boushey, The New York Times Book Review

"An impassioned account of the personal and societal costs of denying economic opportunity to women."—Foreign Affairs

"What [Scott] brings to this relatively well-worn argument is a global perspective, drawing on often fascinating vignettes from the African and Bangladeshi villages in which she has worked, but also a rallying cry against blaming women for things that are not their fault . . . Those who have had more than enough 'fun' feminist books—frothy you-go-girl stuff by celebrity authors, or compendiums of inspiring women down the ages—may well find [The Double X Economy] a tonic."—Gaby Hinsliff, The Guardian

"Like Virginia Woolf before her, Scott identifies female economic empowerment as the key to liberation . . . the coronavirus outbreak has made Scott’s message more urgent than ever . . . a breath of fresh, if infuriating, air. In a world where so many of us stick safely to criticizing the status quo, it’s heartening to read someone willing to offer viable solutions. The question is, will any of us listen?"—Caroline Criado Perez, The Observer (London)

“Linda Scott shines a light on women’s essential and often invisible contributions to our global economy—while combining insight, analysis, and interdisciplinary data to make a compelling and actionable case for unleashing women’s economic power.”—Melinda Gates, author of The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World

The Double X Economy is a powerful presentation on the costs of gender inequality for all of society. Linda Scott makes a strong evidence-based case—interspersed with compelling real life examples from around the globe—for women’s economic empowerment. If we want to grow economies and inclusive prosperity long into the future, there is a solution staring us in the face: unleash the power of women’s full economic participation. As Linda Scott shows, this is the great imperative of our time.”—Melanne Verveer, Executive Director of the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security, and the former U.S. Ambassador for Global Women's Issues

"The Double X Economy is a thought-provoking, data-rich argument for what society and world economies sacrifice by excluding women. This is a crucial book on a crucial subject."—Dr. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women

"[An] in-depth, highly revealing analysis . . . Scott backs her arguments with hard data and numerous charts and graphs, showing unequivocally that women are not being treated fairly regarding nearly every aspect of the global economy. Fortunately, Scott shares plenty of easily implementable ideas to change the situation . . . A precise, eye-opening account that shows what needs to change to make the world a more equitable environment for all."Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

"[Scott assembles] a breathtaking array of data and case studies . . . a thorough, authoritative rebuke to the sexist exclusion of women from financial systems across the world."Booklist

"Remarkably comprehensive . . . Closing with practical tips for making improvements on the global, national, and individual levels, Scott delivers a persuasive call to action enriched by hard data and personal experience. Feminists, economists, and policy makers should consider this impressive and impassioned account required reading."Publishers Weekly

Reviews from Goodreads


Read an Excerpt


As the car whirled through the unlit streets of Accra, my heart pounded. The driver explained the scenes moving past us, his voice full of rage and sorrow.

Hundreds of homeless adolescent girls moved...

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About the author

Linda Scott

Linda Scott is a professor emeritus of entrepreneurship and innovation at the University of Oxford and a senior consulting fellow at the Royal Institute of International Affairs. She is the founder of and senior advisor to the Global Business Coalition for Women’s Economic Empowerment, and she was named one of the top twenty-five world thinkers of 2015 in Prospect. Scott works with multinational corporations, international agencies like the World Bank, national governments, and global NGOs, designing programs to better include women in the world economy. She lives in Rhode Island.

Rick Bern

Linda Scott

Official Links

Double X Economy Website