Gender Equality

It is widely acknowledged that gender equality and women's empowerment are catalysts for reaching sustainable development, including in REDD+. However, given various social, economic and cultural inequalities and legal impediments, particularly  within the forest sector, women (and often other marginalised groups, such as indigenous people, the poor, youth, and handicapped, etc.) within many societies continue to experience ongoing exclusion that limit their ability to fully participate in, contribute to, and benefit from REDD+. It is therefore crucial that deliberate and meaningful efforts are taken to ensure REDD+ action is inclusive, fair and gender-responsive both in policy and in practice.

Acknowledging the critical linkages and synergies between gender equality, reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and sustainable development, the UN-REDD Programme has been taking active steps to promote gender equality and a human rights-based approach in its work since its formulation in 2008. These efforts involve utilizing a multipronged approach with gender. Support has been provided both at the global level, with tools, guidance and reporting on gender and REDD+, as well as at the national level, with assistance being provided in integrating gender equality and women’s empowerment principles into nationally-led REDD+ action. UN-REDD’s approach on gender has also centered on establishing linkages and connections with other UN-REDD thematic areas, such as governance, REDD+ national strategies/action plans (NS/APs), policies and measures, safeguards, multiple benefits and stakeholder engagement.

Many UN-REDD Programme-supported actions have taken place at the regional and country-level to promote the integration of gender equality and women’s empowerment considerations in REDD+ readiness and implementation processes. Countries are increasingly planning activities, conducting baseline assessments, and allocating budget in their key REDD+ documents to ensure the explicit inclusion of gender equality and/or women’s empowerment issues. Nevertheless, as countries move forward in designing and implementing REDD+ action, UN-REDD has seen the continued and pressing need to better integrate gender-responsive activities in a more cohesive and systematic way throughout the REDD+ policy cycle.

Thus, to catalyze and promote a more integrated approach to gender, UN-REDD has placed gender as a crucial cross-cutting theme within its 2016-2020 strategic and reporting frameworks. With this enhanced focus, gender equality and women’s empowerment are integrated as both stand-alone and cross-cutting issues across UN-REDD’s thematic areas and within its technical support at national, regional and global levels. It supports UN-REDD partner countries to systematically integrate gender-responsive activities within the design, implementation and delivery of their REDD+ action, so that all stakeholders, including women, men and youth (and boys and girls, when relevant) can equitably and meaningfully engage, participate and benefit from national REDD+ processes and action. In addition, a Gender Marker system has been created to track and monitor the gender responsiveness of UN-REDD’s technical assistance, towards achieving gender equality.

To assist UN-REDD partner countries, and global, regional and national teams supporting such efforts, in mainstreaming gender into the design, implementation and monitoring of REDD+ action, UN-REDD is promoting and offering technical support across the following five core workstreams:

  • Stream 1 - Gender-responsive assessments and gender-specific analyses: Conduct gender-specific analyses and gender-responsive assessments, which can help establish a gender baseline, identify areas for improvement in REDD+ policy and programming as well as where gender equality and women’s empowerment can be promoted.

  • Stream 2 - Awareness raising and capacity building on gender: Increase the depth of understanding of gender equality and women’s empowerment concepts, build capacity on how to integrate them, and address the misperceptions concerning gender issues at global, regional and national levels.

  • Stream 3 - Gender-responsive participation: Promote gender balance and integrate gender equality and women’s empowerment concepts within workshops, consultations, decision-making bodies, capacity building and training at global, regional and national levels.

  • Stream 4 - Gender-responsive planning and monitoring: Develop gender-responsive monitoring and reporting frameworks and allocate adequate budgets for gender-responsive activities on REDD+, including in REDD+ finance structures.

  • Stream 5 - Knowledge management on gender: Systematize good practices on the design and implementation of gender-responsive REDD+ action and share experiences on gender between countries and regions as well as among stakeholder groups and staff.


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Key Contacts

Ms. Elizabeth Eggerts (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)
UN-REDD gender focal point, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) (PNUD)
Ms. Amanda Bradley (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)
REDD+ Tenure Specialist, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Dr. Janet Macharia (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)
Head Gender and Safeguards Unit, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) (PNUMA) (PNUE)

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