Gender Budgets Make More Cents

Gender Budgets Make More Cents

Country Studies and Good Practice You do not have access to this content

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Debbie Budlender, Guy Hewitt
01 Jan 2002
9781848597983 (PDF)

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Gender Budgets Make More Cents documents ‘good practice’ in gender budget work from across the globe. Practitioners share their first-hand experiences and in-depth knowledge of the why, where and how of gender responsive budget (GRB) initiatives. They reflect on both the challenges and successes of initiatives in the Andean region, Australia, Korea, Mexico, the Philippines, Rwanda, Scotland, South Africa and the United Kingdom. A chapter on the Commonwealth Secretariat’s involvement in developing and implementing GRB initiatives is also included to suggest the role that can be played by external agencies at the national, regional and international level.

This book builds on a previous publication, Gender Budgets Make Cents, which was designed to provide a comprehensive understanding of GRB initiatives. It described the conceptual framework, evolution of the work and lessons learned, and provided brief summaries of country initiatives. Together, these titles show the importance of integrating a gender perspective into government budgets to promote equality between women and men.

It is hoped that this book will be read by a wide range of people from government, multilateral and bilateral agencies and civil society, and inspire them to take forward gender budget work in their own country and organisation.
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  • Foreword

    At their meeting in September this year, the Commonwealth Finance Ministers will discuss gender-responsive budget (GRB) initiatives. For the first time, a group of finance ministers have agreed to include, as a specific agenda item, gender concerns as they relate to macroeconomics and development. This is a significant step in the process of advancing gender equality.

  • Introduction

    This book builds on a previous publication, Gender Budgets Makes Cents. The earlier work provided an overview of gender-responsive budget (GRB) initiatives. It described the conceptual framework, evolution of the work and lessons learned. It also provided brief summaries of country initiatives.

  • The Commonwealth Secretariat: The role of external agencies

    Gender-responsive budget (GRB) initiatives have caught the attention of the gender and development community. Governments, intergovernmental organisations, development agencies, and civil society groups are promoting the use of such initiatives as a central part of their strategy to advance gender equality. This enthusiasm reflects the varied purposes gender-responsive budgets can serve.

  • The Andean Region: A multi-country programme

    The Andean region' experience with gender-responsive budget (GRB) initiatives is different from many others in its multi-country approach. Building on new attention toward women's economic and social rights in the region, and existing participatory budget initiatives throughout Latin America, the United Nations Development fund for Women (UNIFEM) and local women's organisations launched a new round of GRB initiatives in Ecuador, Bolivia and Peru in March 2001.

  • Australia: The mandarin approach to gender budgets

    Australia has a federal political system comprising six State governments, two Territory governments, and the Commonwealth (or Federal) government. This paper describes Australia's experience of gender budgeting at the Federal level, where it was introduced in 1984. It will also highlight experiences at the sub-national level, as State and Territory governments followed the Federal lead.

  • Korea: Raising questions about women-related policies

    During 2001, the Korean non-governmental organisation (NGO) WomenLink carried out a gender budget analysis of seven local governments. WomenLink had been established in 1987 to promote grassroots women's participation in eleven regions of the country. Today it is one of the largest and most active Korean women's NGOs and works in the areas of family and sexuality, labour rights, media action, environment and political empowerment.

  • Mexico: Collaborating with a wide range of actors

    This chapter describes the development of the Mexican gender budget initiative. The initiative started out as the effort of a nation-wide feminist network, integrated during its first years a research centre that specialised in budget analysis, and later on reached into governmental structures. Along the way, the initiative has incorporated experiences, efforts and the work of other networks and organisations, and inserted the topic of gender-sensitive budgets as an item in the political agenda.

  • The Philippines: Getting smart with local budgets

    As in most third world countries, local governments in the Philippines are cash-strapped when it comes to government programmes and projects that are meaningful for women or for the cause of gender and development (GAD). TO give more specific impetus to inclusion of GAD in budgeting, beginning in 1995 the General Appropriations Act which approves the national budget mandated that all national agencies set aside 5 per cent of their agency budgets for GAD. In 1998 local governments were likewise required to allocate 5 per cent of their total budgets for GAD.

  • Rwanda: Translating government commitments into action

    This chapter aims at sharing the experience of Rwanda in engendering the budget. As the initiative is ongoing, the chapter focuses mainly on what has been done so far, the strategies used, the strengths and weaknesses and the challenges. However, the chapter also briefly outlines future plans.

  • Scotland: Using political change to advance gender concerns

    The Scottish experience of promoting gender-sensitive budgeting occurs against a background of significant institutional and policy changes. The key change has been the establishment of the devolved Scottish Parliament in May 1999. The Scottish Parliament is made up of 129 elected members (MSPs) and operates as a self-contained and full parliament in its own right.

  • South Africa: Expanding into diverse initiatives

    South Africa was one of the first countries to have a gender budget initiative. While Australia's initiative was introduced in the mid- 1980s, it was only in the middle of the next decade - in 1995 - that initiatives emerged in other countries, namely in the Philippines and South Africa. In Australia and the Philippines, the initiative was based inside government.

  • United Kingdom: A Focus on taxes and benefits

    The Women's Budget Group (WBG) in the United Kingdom (UK) refers to itself as a think tank on the relationship between women, men and economics. It brings together independent feminists, economists and social policy experts with others from a range of equality-seeking non-governmental organisations (NGOs), unions and research organisations. Members represent their own views, which are informed by their specialist work as researchers on gender and social policy, as trade unionists and as public economists, as well as by their and their organisation's experience in the field of advocacy and public policy.

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