Social services


Gender Discussions On-Line

14 June 2000

The World Bank’s draft Policy Research Report on gender is now on the web for discussion throughout June. The report examines the conceptual and empirical links between gender, public policy, and development outcomes and argues for applying a gender perspective to the design of development policies.

The evidence presented shows that: “In no region of the developing world do women experience equality with men in legal, social, and economic rights. Gender disparities detrimentally affect the welfare of everyone in society.”

The report proposes a 3-part strategy: institutional reforms, based on a foundation of equal rights for women and men; policies for sustained economic development; and active measures to redress persistent gender disparities. It argues that: “improving rights, making institutions gender-sensitive, and promoting economic development can be mutually reinforcing. It recognises, however, that political mobilisation is also important: “behind many public actions to promote gender equality are civil society organizations advocating or providing support for such changes”.

Eva Charkiewitz of the External Gender Consultative Group said she was concerned that “economic efficiency arguments increasingly prevail in the Bank at the expense of the intrinsic value of gender equity”.

External Gender Consultative Group: