International Handbooks on Gender series
Edited by Jill Steans and Daniela Tepe
Chapter 44: Gender and development
Gender and development has gone from being a marginal, critical intervention to integration into mainstream development policy and practice. International and national development agencies now have policies as well as staff and specialised units dedicated to gender issues, and international NGOs include gender issues in their mission statements and remits (Pearson, 2005). To the extent that the gender agenda ‘has arrived’ in international development, gender mainstreaming has been successful. While the concept of gender mainstreaming can be defined in a number of ways, there is a broadly shared agreement that the aim is to produce transformatory processes and practices that reduce gender inequalities through the systematic integration of a gendered perspective in the planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of development policy and programmes across all spheres (Woodford-Berger, 2004). Gender concerns should be viewed as important to all aspects of development, and the responsibility for gender policy should be shared across the institution. In order to put gender mainstreaming into practice, a wide range of analytical tools, frameworks and measures have been developed, such as training manuals, ‘awareness-raising’ and ‘gender sensitisation’ exercises, checklists, gender-disaggregated data collection and gender-specific studies, gender impact assessments and gender analyses of budgets. These have been seen as a means to achieving gender equality.
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