Gender and Empowerment Research

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Gender equality for development is a core theme of i2i work and cuts across all thematic areas. We identify two areas of growth for the current i2i gender analytical agenda: design and test gender strategies in areas where gender-specific constraints have been identified; and build the evidence on gender-specific market failures in underserved areas of impact-evaluation practice. The thematic coverage of the i2i gender program seeks to fill the gaps in four areas identified in the 2012 World Development Report, “Gender Equality and Development”: (i) human capital, (ii) economic productivity, (iii) access to finance, and (iv) empowerment. Overall, over half of the current i2i portfolio is planning a gender-disaggregated analysis, while 19 percent of i2i-supported IEs are testing interventions tailored to address gender issues.

i2i supports rigorous evaluations of policy actions that look to relax supply-side constraints (for example, improving service delivery for clean water, sanitation, and maternal care) as well as market and institutional constraints (for example, reducing systematic differences in earnings). In underserved IE research areas, the i2i program places emphasis on documenting gender constraints in the context of infrastructure investments and governance, with special focus on transport, electoral participation, and women’s labor market participation in FCV settings.   The research agenda evolves with i2i’s portfolio, fueling iterative learning. i2i operationalizes this vision by providing technical and financial assistance to policymakers to identify relevant gender issues, designing appropriate policy action, and testing their impact to motivate scale-up, scale-down and, new testing.

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