BRIDGE Report 67: Gender and PRSPs - with Experiences from Tanzania, Bolivia, Viet Nam and Mozambique

Author: E. Bell
Publisher: Institute of Development Studies UK
Publication Date: Mar 2003
How gender-sensitive were the Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP) processes in Tanzania, Bolivia, Viet Nam and Mozambique? This report finds that the poverty assessments did not provide sufficient gendered information to ensure that the PRSPs were based on a thorough understanding of what drives poverty. The collection and analysis of sex-disaggregated data needs to be prioritised. In general, consultations were rushed and tokenistic, with gender advocates and women particularly under-represented. Capacity building is required to enable a diverse range of women and organisations supporting women's rights to participate in the process. The content of the PRSPs was weak on gender, comments being limited to only certain sectors without an understanding of how gender is relevant to all sectors. Gender specialists are needed to help mainstream gender into the PRSP process, for example by being on the PRSP technical team. While a gender perspective should be incorporated from the outset of the process, where PRSPs have already failed to address gender adequately, the formal update of the PRSP may offer a chance to strengthen this.