Gender Mainstreaming or Just More Male-Streaming? Experiences of Popular Participation in Bolivia

Citation:

Clisby, Suzanne. 2005. “Gender Mainstreaming or Just More Male-Streaming? Experiences of Popular Participation in Bolivia.” Gender & Development 13 (2): 23–35.

Author: Suzanne Clisby

Abstract:

This article provides a critical analysis of an attempt to effectively mainstream gender into the political process in Bolivia. The Law of Popular Participation (LPP), which was implemented in Bolivia from 1994, is widely seen as the first significant attempt by policy makers in the region to mainstream gender into a national development initiative. It aimed to increase the prominence of women in local political and development spheres and is the first Bolivian law to be explicitly couched in gendered terms. However, this article argues that the LPP fell short of its potential to effectively mainstream gender into the political process for two reasons:

-there was a lack of effective gendered analysis of the structural barriers preventing women from political participation – such as the fact that women have less time than men to participate in political processes
-there was a failure to support gender mainstreaming and women’s participation through adequate capacity building at local and regional levels.

As a result, the article concludes that rather than encouraging women’s greater participation and decision making, the LPP has in some cases had the reverse effect of displacing women from traditional forms of political activism at the community level.

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender Mainstreaming, Political Participation Regions: Americas, South America Countries: Bolivia

Year: 2005

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