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Civil Society

Gender Equality and Land Administration: The Case of Zambia

Citation:

Spichiger, Rachel, and Edna Kabala. 2014. “Gender Equality and Land Administration: The Case of Zambia.” DIIS Working Paper 4, Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS), Copenhagen.

Authors: Rachel Spichiger, Edna Kabala

Abstract:

Land, and in particular agricultural land, is central to livelihoods in rural Zambia. Zambia is characterised by a dual legal system of customary and statutory law and by dual land tenure, with state land and customary land. A first wave of socialist-oriented reforms took place after independence in 1964, which abolished previously existing freehold land in favour of lease-hold. Subsequent changes in government policies under the influence of structural adjustment programmes and a new government in 1991 paved the way for a market-driven land reform. The 1995 Lands Act introduced the privatization of land in Zambia and provided for the conversion of customary into state land, with the hope of attracting investors. However, the Act has been unevenly implemented, at least in rural areas, in part due to problems plaguing the land administration institutions and their work, in part due to opposition to the main tenets of the Act from chiefs, the population and civil society. Civil society, with donor support, calls for more attention towards women’s precarious situations with regard to access to and ownership of land under customary tenure, but it still expresses a desire for customary tenure to remain. However, civil society also recognizes that customary practices are often also discriminatory towards women who depend on male relatives for access to land.
 
A gender policy, passed in 2000, and two subsequent draft land policies tried to address women’s lack of access to land by stipulating that 30% of the land should be allocated to women. What has been the role of donors in these developments? Both on the government’s side and for civil society, NGOs and donor agencies, gender has increasingly come to the fore. Donors have certainly pushed for policies and changes in legislation. In particular, the recent Anti Gender-Based Violence Act has been hailed as a huge step for gender equality, and was heavily supported by donors. The land sector, however, does not receive much donor support. While it is notable that donors (e.g. USAID and the World Bank) supported the process leading to the 1995 Lands Act, no donor supported gender issues within that sector in that period. Some donors do take issues related to women’s access to land into account within their agricultural programmes or through their work on democracy and governance, however. Over the last five years, several programmes implemented by NGOs (national and international) and civil-society organisations have focused entirely on women’s land rights. Despite registering some positive outcomes, especially in areas of knowledge and capacity-building, these programmes have met some challenges. Apart from technical and financial issues, it was observed that changes with regard to land tenure are slow to be institutionalised, if at all, and that mechanisms to enhance the accountability of land administrators on both customary and state land are lacking. These initiatives are taking place against a changing background, as Zambia is now at an important juncture at the policy and legal levels, with attempts to codify customary law and to take steps to strengthen tenure security on customary land. How and when this will be done, and how this codified customary law will be enforced, as well as what impact it will have on women remains to be seen. What is also uncertain is what impact this will have on current policies that are under review (e.g. gender and land policies) and the direction that will be taken with regard to issues of tenure security for women living under customary tenure. Whether and, if so, to what extent donors will adopt a defining role in these coming endeavours is not yet clear, especially in a changing aid landscape, since several donor agencies have now withdrawn from Zambia. 

Topics: Civil Society, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Governance, Livelihoods, NGOs, Rights, Land Rights Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Zambia

Year: 2014

Women and Water Management in Times of Climate Change: Participatory and Inclusive Processes

Citation:

Figueiredo, Patricia, and Patricia E. Perkins. 2013. “Women and Water Management in Times of Climate Change: Participatory and Inclusive Processes.” Journal of Cleaner Production 60: 188–94.

Authors: Patricia Figueiredo, Patricia E. Perkins

Abstract:

This paper focuses on community engagement, and particularly the inclusion of women, in water management as a response to climate change. Addressing water-related problems is central to climate change adaptation, and civil society, marginalized populations and women, in particular, must be involved. This is for both moral and pragmatic reasons: not only are the marginalized the first and worst affected by extreme weather events, but they also possess local ecological, social and political knowledge which can inform and contribute significantly to climate change adaptation strategies. Because of their social roles and position worldwide, women are greatly affected by water scarcity and flooding, and tend to be gravely impacted by poor water management, yet they face great difficulties in participating effectively in governance bodies. Sustainable long-term management of water resources in the face of climate change requires the participation of women, who possess knowledge of effective social technologies for coping with and adapting to climate change. Community-based environmental education is therefore required in order to expand the equitable involvement of women in water-related climate change adaptation activities and policy development. Environmental non-governmental organizations worldwide, working on shoestring budgets at the local level, are developing a range of methods to organize, raise consciousness and confidence, and help local activists create successful climate defense programs. This paper discusses South-North initiatives and models for community-based environmental and climate change education which are using the democratic opening provided by watershed-based governance structures to broaden grassroots participation, especially of women, in political processes. We outline the activities and results of two international projects: the Sister Watersheds project, with Brazilian and Canadian partners (2002-2008); and a Climate Change Adaptation in Africa project with partners in Canada, Kenya, Mozambique, and South Africa (2010-2012).

Keywords: climate justice, gender, watershed management, climate change, equity, public participation, civil society, women, community-based environmental education, civil society engagement, Resilience, bottom-up climate change adaptation

Topics: Civil Society, Environment, Climate Change, Environmental Disasters, Gender, Women, Governance, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, NGOs, Political Participation

Year: 2013

Women and the African Peace and Security Architecture

Citation:

Abdullah, Hussaina J. 2017."Women and the African Peace and Security Architecture." African Peacebuilding Network Working Paper 12, Social Science Research Council, New York.

Author: Hussaina J. Abdullah

Annotation:

Summary: 
"The objective of this study is to provide a comprehensive overview and analysis of how women’s rights in situations of armed conflict and post-conflict contexts have been mainstreamed into various mechanisms, structures, and instruments of the AU’s African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA). As part of this exercise, this study conducts a critical examination of the links between APSA’s goal of promoting peace and security and the AU’s Gender Equality Architecture’s (GEA) goal of promoting and protecting the rights of women on the continent.
 
"This paper argues that while the AU has shown its commitment to the issues of peace and security and gender equality through the creation of various structures and the adoption of legal instruments to push through its agenda, the lack of a well-coordinated organizational strategy integrating these two sectors has resulted in limited success in achieving its goals and actualizing its vision. Furthermore, although the AU’s peace and security and gender equality agendas are closely linked to the global women, peace, and security (WPS) discourse, there is very little synergy in the institution’s engagement with and articulation of the global framework. As a result, the expected transformation in the lives of African women in conflict and post- conflict settings has not been realized. Women are still subjected to sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) and other human rights violations and marginalized in peace negotiations and post-war reconstruction processes; simultaneously, impunity for SGBV and other crimes is still rife in these societies. To move the institution’s gender equality agenda forward, a comprehensive gender-responsive organizational strategy and culture are needed to strengthen inter-departmental cooperation at all levels. This will encourage programs and policies that are in sync with the institution’s broad vision of a continent where women and men have equal access to opportunities, rights, and resources.
 
"This paper outlines the significant progress made at the country level as well as the gaps regarding women’s safety and security during and after armed conflict, including their participation in peace processes and post- conflict reconstruction and peacebuilding. It provides an assessment of the achievements and limitations of the gender mainstreaming process,2 particularly in relation to practical measures for promoting gender equality in the APSA, alongside those for implementing policies for the promotion of peace and security within the framework of the Gender Equality Architecture (GEA). It concludes with a set of recommendations for AU policymakers and civil society practitioners" (Abdullah 2017, 1-2).

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Society, Gender, Gender-Based Violence, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, conflict, peace and security, Governance, Post-conflict Governance, International Organizations, Peacebuilding, Peace Processes, Post-Conflict, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, Sexual Violence, SV against women Regions: Africa

Year: 2017

Victims, Soldiers, Peacemakers and Caretakers: The Neoliberal Constitution of Women in the EU's Security Policy

Citation:

Muehlenhoff, Hanna L. 2017. “Victims, Soldiers, Peacemakers and Caretakers: The Neoliberal Constitution of Women in the EU’s Security Policy.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 19 (2): 153–67.

Author: Hanna L. Muehlenhoff

Abstract:

Feminist scholars praise and criticize the UNSC Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security for its considerations of women and gender in conflicts. Poststructuralist feminists show how gender is constructed in the UN’s security policies and how these constructions reproduce gendered dichotomies between women and men and representations of women as victims, part of civil society and neoliberal subjects. Although the UNSC Resolutions 1325 and 1820 are implemented by the EU, there is no literature on how the EU is taking up the UN’s discourse. Scholars studying gender policies in and of the EU mainly analyze the (in)effectiveness of EU gender mainstreaming but rarely interrogate its discursive foundations. Using a governmentality perspective, I argue that on the one hand the EU produces a binary and stereotypical understanding of gender, and on the other hand constitutes women as neoliberal subjects responsible for their own well-being, ignoring broader structures of (gender) inequality and war and making gender equality solely an instrument to achieve more security and development.

Keywords: governmentality, EU, gender, security, neoliberal

Topics: Civil Society, Development, Economies, Gender, Women, Gender Mainstreaming, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, peace and security, International Organizations, Peacebuilding, Security, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325, UNSCR 1820

Year: 2017

Women, PMSCs and International Law: Gender and Private Force

Citation:

Vrdoljak, Ana F. 2015. “Women, PMSCs and International Law: Gender and Private Force.” In Gender and Private Security in Global Politics, edited by Maya Eichler, 187-207. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Author: Ana F. Vrdoljak

Abstract:

The application of international law norms and shortcomings of existing regulatory regimes covering PMSCs reinforce concerns about transparency and accountability in respect of gender-related violence, harassment, and discrimination. This chapter focuses on the main issues and legal concerns raised by the impact of the privatization of war on women. The first part examines current initiatives at the international level to provide a regulatory framework for PMSCs and encompasses the obligations of states (and international organizations) in respect of international humanitarian law, human rights law, and use of force. The second part outlines the influence of civil society participation (including feminist academics, women’s NGOs, and so forth) in breaking the “silence” within international organizations and international law concerning violence against women and girls and its potential influence upon the regulation of PMSCs.

Keywords: women, private military and security companies, international law, human rights law, International Humanitarian Law, United Nations, PMSCs

Topics: Civil Society, Gender-Based Violence, International Law, International Human Rights, International Humanitarian Law IHL, International Organizations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security, Privatization, Violence

Year: 2015

Prevention in Pieces: Representing Conflict in the Women, Peace and Security Agenda

Citation:

Basu, Soumita, and Laura J. Shepherd. 2018. "Prevention in Pieces: Representing Conflict in the Women, Peace and Security Agenda." Global Affairs 3(4-5): 441-453.

Authors: Soumita Basu, Laura J. Shepherd

Abstract:

The Women, Peace and Security agenda is often operationalized across three priority areas: the participation of women in peace and security governance; the protection of women’s rights and bodies (specifically, but not limited to, conflict-related sexual violence); and the prevention of conflict. In this short paper, we explore violence prevention in more detail, and argue that it is of critical importance to define conflict as well as prevention. We draw on the illustrative examples of Australia, the UK and India to explain how this definitional work happens within the machinery of the state and the networks of civil society. Understanding how conflict is theorized by different actors in different locations not only gives insight into the tendency towards militarization in the WPS agenda but also can be interpreted as a manifestation of contestation over ownership of the WPS agenda and its location between the state and civil society.

Keywords: women, peace and security, UNSCR 1325, National Action Plans

Topics: Civil Society, Conflict Prevention, Gender, Women, conflict, peace and security, Governance, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarization, Rights, Women's Rights, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325, Sexual Violence, SV against women, Violence Regions: Asia, South Asia, Europe, Northern Europe, Oceania Countries: Australia, India, United Kingdom

Year: 2018

A Feminist Perspective on the Post-2015 Development Agenda

Citation:

Abelenda, Ana Ines. 2014. "A Feminist Perspective on the Post-2015 Development Agenda." The Equal Rights Review 13: 117-28.

Author: Ana Ines Abelenda

Abstract:

World leaders and diverse development actors are currently embroiled in a series of negotiations around a new global development agenda to follow the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) once they expire in 2015. The Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID) has been heavily involved in seeking to shape the new agenda to ensure that it adequately addresses human rights, including women’s rights and gender equality. The negotiation process has been complex, frustrating at times for civil society and women’s rights advocates, yet a historical opportunity to re-shape global understandings of development in the struggle towards social, economic, ecological and gender justice. As the world navigates a context of multiple intersecting global crises coupled with increasing inequality and militarism, it becomes clear that business as usual is not an option. A paradigm shift is needed. This position paper presents a feminist analysis to help unpack what is at stake for people and the planet by pushing the envelope on the kind of world we want to live in. This approach is one which both AWID and  the author believe is key to systemic change. A mere look at the ‘shopping list’ of goals and targets currently on the negotiating table is not enough. Feminist and progressive social movements must not bypass the opportunity to challenge the systemic root causes in the current economic system that continue to undermine women’s autonomy and the achievement of human rights for all.

Topics: Civil Society, Development, Economies, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, International Organizations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militarism, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights

Year: 2014

Building Inclusive Cities

Citation:

Whitzman, Carolyn, Crystal Legacy, Caroline Andrew, Fran Klodawsky, Margaret Shaw, Kalpana Viswanath eds. 2013. Building Inclusive Cities. New York: Routledge. 

Authors: Carolyn Whitzman, Crystal Legacy, Caroline Andrew, Fran Klodawsky, Margaret Shaw, Kalpana Viswanath

Annotation:

Summary:
“Building on a growing movement within developing countries in Latin America, Africa and Asia–Pacific, as well as Europe and North America, this book documents cutting-edge practice and builds theory around a rights-based approach to women’s safety in the context of poverty reduction and social inclusion. Drawing upon two decades of research and grass-roots action on safer cities for women and everyone, this book is about the right to an inclusive city. The first part of the book describes the challenges that women face regarding access to essential services, housing security, liveability and mobility. The second part of the book critically examines programmes, projects and ideas that are working to make cities safer. Building Inclusive Cities takes a cross-cultural learning perspective from action research occurring throughout the world and translates this research into theoretical conceptualizations to inform the literature on planning and urban management in both developing and developed countries. This book is intended to inspire both thought and action” (Whitzman 2013, i).

Topics: Civil Society, Development, Economies, Economic Inequality, Poverty, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Infrastructure, Transportation, Water & Sanitation

Year: 2013

Women, Environment, and Sustainable Development

Citation:

Pandey, Shanta. 1998. “Women, Environment, and Sustainable Development.” International Social Work 41 (3): 339-55. 

Author: Shanta Pandey

Annotation:

Summary:
“In developing countries, poor populations, especially women and children, are disproportionately concentrated in ecologically degraded, fragile, and marginal lands (Durning, 1989). A wide range of development programs have been launched to promote social and economic development of rural areas. These programs are in the form of reforestation, irrigation and drinking water improvement, innovative farming techniques, primary health care facilities and health education, and training and human capital development. People’s participation, especially women’s, in these development programs is crucial for their success. Much has been written on the failure of states and development projects to engage rural people, especially rural women, in these rural development initiatives (Mayoux, 1995). This paper reviews several case studies conducted in Nepal and identifies some of the factors that contribute to the participation of rural people, especially rural women, in forest resources management programs. The paper also discusses social workers’ role in promoting participation and sustainable development” (Pandey, 1998, 339).

Topics: Civil Society, Development, Economies, Economic Inequality, Poverty, Environment, Climate Change, Environmental Disasters, Gender, Women, Humanitarian Assistance, Infrastructure, Energy, Transportation, Water & Sanitation Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Nepal

Year: 1998

Social Participation and Disaster Risk Reduction Behaviors in Tsunami Prone Areas

Citation:

Witvorapong, Nopphol, Raya Muttarak, and Wiraporn Pothisiri. 2015. “Social Participation and Disaster Risk Reduction Behaviors in Tsunami Prone Areas.” PLoS ONE 10 (7): 1–20.

Authors: Nopphol Witvorapong, Raya Muttarak, Wiraporn Pothisiri

Abstract:

This paper examines the relationships between social participation and disaster risk reduction actions. A survey of 557 households in tsunami prone areas in Phang Nga, Thailand was conducted following the 2012 Indian Ocean earthquakes. We use a multivariate probit model to jointly estimate the likelihood of undertaking three responses to earthquake and tsunami hazards (namely, (1) following disaster-related news closely, (2) preparing emergency kits and/or having a family emergency plan, and (3) having an intention to migrate) and community participation. We find that those who experienced losses from the 2004 tsunami are more likely to participate in community activities and respond to earthquake hazards. Compared to men, women are more likely to prepare emergency kits and/or have an emergency plan and have a greater intention to migrate. Living in a community with a higher proportion of women with tertiary education increases the probability of engaging in community activities and carrying out disaster risk reduction measures. Individuals who participate in village-based activities are 5.2% more likely to undertake all three risk reduction actions compared to those not engaging in community activities. This implies that encouraging participation in community activities can have positive externalities in disaster mitigation.

Topics: Civil Society, Displacement & Migration, Migration, Environment, Environmental Disasters, Gender, Women, Men, Gender Analysis Regions: Asia, Southeast Asia Countries: Thailand

Year: 2015

Pages

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