Gender equality and women’s empowerment are powerful levers for change. Women are vital to conservation and resilience, and gender equality is intrinsically linked to achieving sustainable development goals. Yet gender inequalities and gaps persist. Women’s unique and crucial roles, responsibilities, and knowledge in natural resource use and management are often overlooked. Women commonly face obstructed access to resources, markets, and services, and they are underrepresented in—if not restricted from—decision-making spheres at all levels. Women also face the chronic threat of gender-based violence across multiple spheres, including in the environment sector and in fisheries. The result is a lost opportunity for environmental initiatives to achieve multiple benefits and increase effectiveness, as gender equality and women’s empowerment leads to more successful development outcomes.

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Credit: Jamie Wen-Besson/IUCN

Advancing Gender in the Environment (AGENT) Project

AGENT works to strengthen environment programming through gender integration and, in tandem, leverage environment programming for women’s empowerment and gender equality outcomes. AGENT envisions a world that approaches environmental work with gender-responsive policy, strategies, and action.
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HHI Program on Gender Rights and Resilience

Gender-based violence and environment linkages: The violence of inequality

A gender-responsive approach proactively identifies gender-based gaps, discriminations and biases, and then takes coordinated steps to develop and implement actions to address and overcome them. Gender-responsive strategies and results go beyond “doing no harm” and aim to do better, unlocking gender-based barriers, empowering women and advancing gender equality.
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