'For the Elections, We Want Women!': Closing the Gender Gap in Zambian Politics


Evans, Alice. 2016. “‘For the Elections, We Want Women!’: Closing the Gender Gap in Zambian Politics.” Development and Change 47 (2): 388–411. doi:10.1111/dech.12224.

Author: Alice Evans


This article examines the causes of women's rising political participation in Zambia. It argues that women's historical paucity in politics was largely the result of widely-shared gender stereotypes. These are now weakening due to growing flexibility in gender divisions of labour, which has been catalysed by worsening economic security. By performing work previously presumed to be beyond their abilities and valorized because of its association with masculinity, such women are increasingly perceived as equally capable of leadership. This gradual erosion of gender beliefs has fostered women's political participation and leadership in Zambia.

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Governance, Elections, Political Participation, Post-Conflict Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Zambia

Year: 2016

(Dis)(em)placing Gender at Ukwimi: Refugee Resettlement and Repatriation in Eastern Zambia


Subulwa, Angela Gray. 2015. “(Dis)(em)placing Gender at Ukwimi: Refugee Resettlement and Repatriation in Eastern Zambia.” Gender, Place & Culture 22 (8): 1177–94. doi:10.1080/0966369X.2014.958060.


Author: Angela Gray Subulwa


There is growing recognition within feminist scholarship that managing displacement is a highly contested, politicized, and gendered process. This article seeks to contribute by demonstrating that the processes of resettlement and repatriation (both thought of as ‘solutions’ to displacement) are also contested, politicized, and gendered. My analysis is situated within feminist geopolitics and includes empirical data collected from interviews with and observations of Mozambican/Angolan refugees, their hosts, and institutional actors at Ukwimi Refugee Settlement (URS), Zambia. Specifically, the discussion focuses on two realities. First, that resettlement to formal, organized settlements (like URS) actively displaces gender dynamics, as illustrated by the case of Mozambican refugees resettled to URS. Second, that large-scale, organized repatriation also displaces gender relationships in profound ways, as demonstrated by the large-scale repatriation of Angolan refugees from URS. In the midst of multiple displacements, the daily (and highly gendered) struggles of people at URS reflect the concrete ways in which refugees and their hosts actively seek to emplace themselves at URS.

Keywords: refugees, Zambia, displacement, repatriation, feminist geopolitics

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Feminisms, Gender, Post-Conflict Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Zambia

Year: 2015

Big Men and Ballots: The Effects of Traditional Leaders on Elections and Distributive Politics in Zambia


Baldwin, Kate. 2010. "Big Men and Ballots: The Effects of Traditional Leaders on Elections and Distributive Politics in Zambia." PhD. Diss. Columbia University. 

Author: Kate Baldwin


This dissertation examines an inconsistency in the literature on African politics. Most scholars accept that African politics is "patrimonial"; politicians stay in power by building relationships with local big men, such as traditional chiefs, who can mobilize support for them. However, the vast majority of governments in Africa are now elected, and when voters choose their government in the secrecy of the ballot box, it is not clear that traditional chiefs can influence how they vote. An "institutionalist" perspective would suggest that chiefs' political views are irrelevant once the secret ballot has been instituted.

Topics: Gender, Men, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Governance, Elections, Tribe Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Zambia

Year: 2010

Women, Non-Governmental Organizations, and Deforestation: a Cross-National Study


Shandra, John M., Carrie L. Shandra, and Bruce London. 2008. “Women, Non-Governmental Organizations, and Deforestation: A Cross-National Study.” Population and Environment 30 (1-2): 48–72.

Authors: John M. Shandra, Carrie L. Shandra, Bruce London


There have been several cross-national studies published in the world polity theoretical tradition that find a strong correlation between nations with high levels of environmental nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and low levels of various forms of environmental degradation. However, these studies neglect the role that women’s NGOs potentially play in this process. We seek to address this gap by conducting a cross-national study of the association between women’s NGOs and deforestation. We examine this relationship because deforestation often translates into increased household labor, loss of income, and impaired health for women and, as a result, women’s non-governmental organizations have become increasingly involved in dealing with these problems often by protecting forests. We use data from a sample of 61 nations for the period of 1990–2005. We find substantial support for world polity theory that both high levels of women’s and environmental NGOs per capita are associated with lower rates of deforestation. We also find that high levels of debt service and structural adjustment are correlated with higher rates of forest loss. We conclude with a discussion of findings, policy implications, and possible future research directions.

Keywords: deforestation, women, non-governmental organizations, cross-national

Topics: Economies, Environment, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, NGOs Regions: Africa, MENA, Central Africa, East Africa, North Africa, Southern Africa, West Africa, Americas, Caribbean countries, Central America, North America, South America, Asia, East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Europe, Baltic states, Balkans, Central Europe, Eastern Europe, Oceania Countries: Albania, Algeria, Angola, Argentina, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ecuador, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Hungary, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Mexico, Mongolia, Mozambique, Nepal, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Romania, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Swaziland, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad & Tobago, Uganda, Uruguay, Zambia, Zimbabwe

Year: 2008

Gendered Impacts of Commercial Pressures on Land


Daley, Elizabeth. 2010. Gendered Impacts of Commercial Pressures on Land. Rome: International Land Coalition.

Author: Elizabeth Daley


This paper contains a careful and focused analysis of the gendered impacts of commercial pressures on land (CPL), and especially their impacts on women. It is based on a review of the literature on CPL to date and an analysis from a gender perspective of International Land Coalition country case studies carried out in India, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Ethiopia, Zambia, Rwanda and Benin. Arguing that women are both likely to be affected differently from men by large-scale land deals and disproportionately more likely to be negatively affected than men because they are generally vulnerable as a group, the paper provides recommendations as to how tools and procedures envisaged by proposed regulatory frameworks must be locally appropriate and must specifically address all four aspects of women’s vulnerability with respect to CPL: productive resources, participation in decision-making, relative income poverty and physical vulnerability. (International Land Coalition)

Topics: Extractive Industries, Gender, Gender Analysis, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Land Grabbing, Multi-National Corporations, Rights, Land Rights, Women's Rights, Sexual Violence, SV against Women, Violence Regions: Africa, Central Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa, West Africa, Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Benin, Ethiopia, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Rwanda, Zambia

Year: 2010

Widows’ Land Security in the Era of HIV/AIDS: Panel Survey Evidence from Zambia


Chapoto, Antony, T. S. Jayne, and Nicole M. Mason. 2011. “Widows’ Land Security in the Era of HIV/AIDS: Panel Survey Evidence from Zambia.” Economic Development and Cultural Change 59 (3): 511–47. doi:10.1086/658346.

Authors: Antony Chapoto, T. S. Jayne, Nicole M. Mason


In areas of Africa hard hit by HIV/AIDS, there are growing concerns that many women lose access to land after the death of their husbands. However, there remains a dearth of quantitative evidence on the proportion of widows who lose access to their deceased husbands’ land, whether they lose all or part of that land, and whether there are factors specific to the widow, her family, or the broader community that influence her ability to maintain rights to land. This study examines these issues using average treatment effects models with propensity score matching applied to nationally-representative panel data of 5,342 rural households surveyed in 2001 and 2004. Results are highly variable, with roughly a third of households incurring the death of a male household head controlling less than 50 percent of the land they had prior to their husband’s death, while over a quarter actually controlled as much or even more land than while their husbands were alive. Widows who were in relatively wealthy households prior to their husband’s death lose proportionately more land than widows in households that were relatively poor. Older widows and widows related to the local headman enjoy greater land security. Women in matrilineal inheritance areas were no less likely to lose land than women in patrilineal areas.

Topics: Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Health, HIV/AIDS, Households, Rights, Land Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Zambia

Year: 2011

Engendering the Global Financial and Economic Crisis: Unveiling the Links between Formal and Informal Sectors in the Mining Regions in Zambia and Assessing the Gender Implications


Namatovu, Regina, and Cristina Espinosa. 2011. “Engendering the Global Financial and Economic Crisis: Unveiling the Links between Formal and Informal Sectors in the Mining Regions in Zambia and Assessing the Gender Implications.” International Journal of Business and Social Science 2 (20): 66–79.

Authors: Regina Namatovu, Cristina Espinosa


The history of previous economic crises reveals devastating effects for the poor and vulnerable, with strong evidence of differentiated impacts for women and men. Reports on the recent economic crisis (2008/9) that severely hit Zambia’s mining sector confirm the negative impacts of the crisis on the livelihoods of workers within the formal sector in the mining regions. Female and male workers in the informal sector associated with and dependent upon the formal mining sector have also been impacted by this crisis, although these impacts remain underreported. Due to differentiated impacts of the crisis for women and men, the livelihoods and the gender roles within families in the mining regions have dramatically changed. This case study assesses the implications of the economic crisis in the mining regions of Zambia, from a gender perspective, highlighting the interconnectedness between the formal and informal sectors and how the negative effects on one have a spillover effect on the other. The study makes visible the gendered impact of the economic crisis on local livelihoods in Africa, for those engaged in tradable and in non tradable sectors, debunking the assumption that local populations that are not directly engaged in economies linked to global markets experience less severe consequences of the global crisis.


  • Policy recommendations: economic diversification to guard against shocks, greater allocation of financial resources to healthcare and infrastructure, gender-responsive budgets to “lighten burden of unpaid care work” (76)


“The research question guiding this inquiry is: How did the livelihoods and gender relations of the families depending either on direct employment or on the informal sector servicing the mining sector change after the economic crisis handicapped the mining sector in Zambia’s Copperbelt?” (67)

“Women’s over-representation in the informal sector, which offers lower wages and no social protection or benefits, made them more vulnerable to the negative effects of the crisis, as compared to men employed mostly in the formal sector.” (67)

“Between 2009 and 2010, regional mining output was anticipated to further decline by 23 percent and by 2020, the aftermath of the crisis would spread to manufacturing, construction and service sectors with broader impacts on national economies of countries such as Zambia, Zimbabwe, the DRC (200,000 jobs lost), and South Africa (30,000 jobs lost).” (68)

“In addition to a negative economic environment, women in the informal sector faced the competition from male workers laid off from the formal sector. Dramatic cuts in the public health sector budget (25.3 percent) resulted from the fall in government revenue and contributions from donor agencies. The care provisioning role shifted from the government and private sector (mining companies) to poor women and girls who had to shoulder this responsibility, in the context of increased poverty and vulnerability.” (69)

“Mining regions such as Ndola, Kitwe and Chingola have recorded increased sex worker activity since November 2008 (first quarter of the crisis), and these regions bear the highest HIV prevalence rates at 26.6 percent, much over the national average of 15 percent.” (75)

Topics: Economies, Care Economies, Poverty, Extractive Industries, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Globalization, Health, HIV/AIDS, Households, Infrastructure, Livelihoods, Sexual Livelihoods, Political Economies Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Zambia

Year: 2011

Gender Mainstreaming Experiences from Eastern and Southern Africa


Tadesse, Matebu, and Abiye Daniel, eds. 2010. Gender Mainstreaming Experiences from Eastern and Southern Africa. Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: Organisation for Social Science Research in Eastern and Southern Africa (OSSREA).

Authors: Matebu Tadesse, Abiye Daniel


Mainstreaming a gender perspective is the process of assessing the implications for women and men of any planned action, including legislation, policies or programmes, in any area and at all levels. It is a strategy for making the concerns and experiences of women as well as of men an integral part of the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of policies and programmes in all political, economic and societal spheres, so that women and men benefit equally, and inequality is not perpetuated. The ultimate goal of mainstreaming is to achieve gender equality. This work explores the experiences of Kenya, Tanzania, and Ethiopia from Eastern Africa; and Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and Swaziland from Southern Africa. All cases show the varied attempts to mainstream gender at national, institutional, and civil society levels, including grassroots experiences. (Google Books)

Topics: Gender, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality Regions: Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Botswana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe

Year: 2010

Re-Thinking Gender Mainstreaming in African NGOs and Communities


Wendoh, Senorina, and Tina Wallace. 2005. “Re-Thinking Gender Mainstreaming in African NGOs and Communities.” Gender & Development 13 (2): 70–9.

Authors: Senorina Wendoh, Tina Wallace


This article examines research on gender mainstreaming initiatives, undertaken by a sample of local NGOs in four African countries. This research explores where resistance to gender equality comes from in some African organisations and communities. It shows that for gender mainstreaming processes to be effective they need to address the complex realities of people, and be sensitive to the values of communities in their implementation. The more successful gender mainstreaming initiatives have worked with local people's beliefs and realities, and allowed sufficient time for attitudinal change in both local people and NGO staff.

Topics: Gender, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, NGOs Regions: Africa, Central Africa, East Africa, Southern Africa, West Africa Countries: Gambia, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia

Year: 2005


© 2023 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at

Subscribe to RSS - Zambia