While efforts at integrating gender considerations into climate change mitigation and the renewable energy sector have progressed over the years, most of this progress has taken place in small-scale, community-based projects. Though these initiatives demonstrate ways in which engaging women improves the success of energy access and climate mitigation efforts, the results are often not well-documented or translated into national policies. Hence, the energy and mitigation sectors continues to act under the assumption that their policies, programs and projects are gender neutral–meaning that they benefit or affect women and men equally.
Political economy is a branch of social science that studies the relationships between individuals and societies, the market and the state. By utilizing political economy analytical tools and methodologies it is possible to have a better understanding of existing power relations in a society and the reasons why energy policies do not address gender considerations in their mandates. In addition, political economy can provide guidance for remediating gender gaps at policy and program levels.
At a moment when the international community has agreed to work towards achieving new development pathways through the pursuit of the SDGs, with the goal of achieving universal access to modern energy sources and gender equality by 2030, and the generation of social, environmental and economic [co]benefits from mitigation initiatives, it becomes imperative to understand how progress in the energy sector can address gender equality–in this case through the implementation of women-centered clean energy projects.
The webinar was moderated by Ana Rojas, IUCN, and included the following presentations:
- Political economy and gender mainstreaming in the energy sector with Andrew Barnett, The Policy Practice
- Gender equality, women’s rights and access to energy services with Katrine Danielsen, Royal Tropical Institute
- Women’s bargaining power and its implications for the energy sector with Dev Nathan, Visiting Professor, Institute for Human Development & Visiting Research Fellow, Duke University
This webinar is a joint collaboration between IUCN’s GECCO initiative* and ENERGIA. The Gender Equality for Climate Change Opportunities (GECCO) initiative is a five-year program launched by USAID and IUCN in 2014. GECCO’s overall goal is to leverage advancements in women’s empowerment and gender equality through, and for, the benefit of climate change and development outcomes.
*The former Gender Equality for Climate Change Opportunities (GECCO) initiative is now part of a broader program, Advancing Gender in the Environment (AGENT), which aims to improve development outcomes by strengthening environmental programing through gender integration and achieving gender equality outcomes.