Strategy+Business, in their article The Third Billion, takes a fascinating look at the potential impact of developing world women as they enter the economic mainstream in the coming years.
The article compares the impact of developing world women to the impact of China and India:
"If China and India each represent 1 billion emerging participants in the global marketplace, then this “third billion” is made up of women, in both developing and industrialized nations, whose economic lives have previously been stunted, underleveraged, or suppressed.
These women, who have been living or contributing at a subsistence level, are now entering the mainstream for the first time. We estimate that about 870 million of them will do so by 2020, with the number conceivably passing 1 billion during the following decade."
The social and economic impacts of this group entering the mainstream will be enormous. Birth rates will likely fall, education rates will likely increase and, of course, this group will provide a huge new market for a wide variety of goods and services.