Technical Workshop: Gender and REDD+ Learning Exchange
This technical workshop report covers an event held in Washington, D.C., May 2014, that focused on the Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) program’s intersection with gender issues. Hosting 52 participants from 20 countries, the workshop convened decision-makers and leading experts to present and discuss the gender and REDD+ agenda. A number of initiatives were highlighted at the event including how to effectively incorporate gender considerations into REDD+ programming such as technical support and capacity building.
One focus — gender-responsive implementation — was found to be an important aspect for countries. There are significant gaps, but best practices have emerged. Gender and REDD+ have several common threads including women’s land ownership, tenure and access, control over resources, and access to forest decision-making spheres, for example. Because REDD+ has been found to be a valuable platform for reform, the report argues that it can be a place to successfully include general considerations into its strategy. The workshop acknowledged the goal within REDD+ to leverage opportunities far beyond just gender/REDD+ to include other important policy and reform issues such as land use, forestry, gender equality, natural resource management, and more broadly, climate change mitigation and adaptation. One common need cited included a common knowledge platform to aggregate gender-mainstreaming tools in REDD+, which USAID and IUCN commit to developing.
Excerpt from the report:
Priority actions identified included the following:
- Developing strategies to bypass land tenure complexities to ensure access to resources;
- Conducting participatory assessments of direct and indirect costs and benefits from women’s participation in REDD+;
- Requiring specific/concrete gender indicators for safeguards and safeguard information systems;
- Building benefit-sharing mechanisms (BSM) based on gender-differentiated roles and actions to reduce deforestation and degradation, including gender-based drivers/reducers of deforestation and degradation; and
- Developing safe, accessible, gender-responsive grievance and redress mechanisms.