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Environmental Social Work: Accounting for Gender in Climate Disasters


Alston, Margaret. 2013. “Environmental Social Work: Accounting for Gender in Climate Disasters.” Australian Social Work 66 (2): 218–33.

Author: Margaret Alston


The person-in-the-environment concept has largely been interpreted by social workers to indicate social networks and relationships, ignoring the physical environment and its complex impact on human health and wellbeing. This article examines the environmental domain, noting the critical role social workers can have in this field as a consequence of climate events and global warming. The article notes the significance of gender as a key factor in vulnerability to disasters and outlines the need for social workers to consider gender as a critical indicator in their work in this emerging area. Embodiment, connection to place, poverty, and cultural awareness are also significant, but often overlooked, factors in a social work response to environmental disasters. Ecological and ecofeminist theories give a direction for social work theory and practice in the postdisaster space. The article challenges social workers to reconsider the person-in- the-environment as a complex and critical emerging domain of social work theories and practice, a domain where gender awareness is fundamental.

Keywords: environmental social work, accounting for gender in climate disasters

Topics: Economies, Poverty, Environment, Climate Change, Environmental Disasters, Feminisms, Gender, Health, Mental Health

Year: 2013

Gender Essentialism in Canadian Foreign Aid Commitments to Women, Peace, and Security


Tiessen, Rebecca. 2015. “Gender Essentialism in Canadian Foreign Aid Commitments to Women, Peace, and Security.” International Journal 70 (1): 84-100.

Author: Rebecca Tiessen


Canada has made a wide range of commitments to the promotion of gender equality in development assistance programming. However, in its fragile states programs, these commitments have in fact promoted gender essentialism, treating women as victims of violence rather than as active agents of peace and development. Drawing on a comparative analysis of the National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security arising from the passing of Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000) and on interviews conducted with a small sample of current and former Canadian government officials, this article documents and analyzes Canada’s comparatively weak and limited efforts to promote gender equality abroad under the Harper Conservatives, particularly for fragile and conflict-affected states. The research presented here is situated within broader feminist critiques of international relations and Canadian foreign policy, which document the centrality of gender equality to security and the role that international and national policies play in shaping gendered security dynamics.

Keywords: gender, security, Canadian foreign policy, gender essentialism, Harper government

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, peace and security, International Organizations, Security, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325, Violence Regions: Americas, North America Countries: Canada

Year: 2015

Mind the Gap: Institutional Considerations for Gender-Inclusive Climate Change Policy in Sub-Saharan Africa


Makina, Anesu, and Theresa Moyo. 2016. “Mind the Gap: Institutional Considerations for Gender-Inclusive Climate Change Policy in Sub-Saharan Africa.” Local Environment: The International Journal of Justice and Sustainability 21 (10): 1185–97.

Authors: Anesu Makina, Theresa Moyo


This paper positions climate change against the backdrop of gender, premised on the understanding that neither climate change impacts nor responses are gender neutral, therefore institutions need to respond accordingly. Institutions play a central role in facilitating policy effects and forming major nodes of interaction as well as determining the accentuation of risk. Drawing on examples from different parts of Sub-Saharan Africa, the paper seeks to elucidate why women should be placed at the heart of climate change interventions. Establishing the appropriate connections between gender and climate change will enhance the opportunities for problem-solving and can increase the efficiency and effectiveness of policy-making. The gendered aspects of climate change and environmental relations are analysed by using an African feminist approach as the theoretical framework to expand and expound upon this position. This paper also investigates institutional matters pertaining to the management of environmental resources and highlights some of the constraints that need to be overcome in order to ensure the inclusion and empowerment of women in the management of these resources. It concludes by calling for a thorough understanding of the gender-based power relations in the agendas and activities of environmental governance institutions at all levels in society.

Keywords: gender, environment, climate change, africa, institutions

Topics: Environment, Climate Change, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Governance Regions: Africa

Year: 2016

Hybrid Clubs: A Feminist Approach to Peacebuilding in the Democratic Republic of Congo


Martin de Almagro, Maria. 2018. “Hybrid Clubs: A Feminist Approach to Peacebuilding in the Democratic Republic of Congo.” Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding, July, 1–16.

Author: Maria Martin de Almagro


Critical approaches to peacebuilding have achieved a local turn wherein alienated indigenous experiences are the cornerstone of emancipatory practices – yet this emancipation of the ‘different’ risks perpetuating the discrimination and normalization of the challenged liberal peace. Using the case study of a feminist campaign to elect more women in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), this article’s feminist approach to critical peacebuilding utilizes storytelling to develop a conceptual grid that reveals the complexities of the politics of difference, and proposes the concept of the ‘hybrid club’ as a cluster of local and international actors coalescing to develop peacebuilding initiatives.

Keywords: hybridity, gender, Democratic Republic of Congo, space, embodiment, experience, peacebuilding

Topics: Feminisms, Gendered Power Relations, Peacebuilding Regions: Africa, Central Africa Countries: Democratic Republic of the Congo

Year: 2018

The (In)Security of Gender in Afghanistan’s Peacebuilding Project: Hybridity and Affect


Partis-Jennings, Hannah. 2017. “The (In)Security of Gender in Afghanistan’s Peacebuilding Project: Hybridity and Affect.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 19 (4): 411-25.

Author: Hannah Partis-Jennings


In this article I draw on a feminist approach to hybridity to explore interview data and observations from my field research in Afghanistan. I argue that there is a logic of masculinist protection influencing the affective environment of the peacebuilding project there. The combination of a perceived patriarchal context in Afghanistan and security routines protecting civilian internationals (and Afghan elites), which rely on hypermasculine signifiers, help to create and perpetuate the conditions in which the female (for both internationals and Afghans) is marked with insecurity. I point to hybridity between the foreign and female experience, as well as resistance and reflexivity within my research. Throughout I explore fragments of power hierarchies that cut through the meaning of gender, rendering the female state a disempowering one, always referenced in some uncertain, hybrid way as protected or in need of protection.

Keywords: peacebuilding, Afghanistan, hybridity, Affect, masculinist protection

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Hierarchies, Peacebuilding Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: Afghanistan

Year: 2017

Gendering Climate Change: Geographical Insights


Sultana, Farhana. 2014. “Gendering Climate Change: Geographical Insights.” The Professional Geographer 66 (3): 372–81.

Author: Farhana Sultana


Although climate change is expected to increase vulnerabilities, marginalization, and sufferings of many in the Global South, impacts will be unevenly felt across social strata. Intersectionalities of social difference, especially along gender and class lines, differentiate the ways in which impacts of climate change are experienced and responded to. Feminist political ecology and feminist geography insights can explain how different groups of people understand, respond to, and cope with variability and uncertainties in nuanced and critical ways, thereby elucidating the gendered implications of climate change. With a regional focus on South Asia, the article underscores the key issues that can be applied geographically elsewhere. Gendered implications of climate change in South Asia are particularly poignant as patriarchal norms, inequities, and inequalities often place women and men in differentiated positions in their abilities to respond to and cope with dramatic changes in socioecological relations but also foreground the complex ways in which social power relations operate in communal responses to adaptation strategies. This is particularly evident in water-related productive and reproductive tasks in agrarian societies that constitute the majority of South Asia. As climate change is expected to exacerbate both ecological degradation (e.g., water shortages) and water-related natural hazards (e.g., floods, cyclones), thereby transforming gender–water geographies, it becomes imperative to undertake careful multiscalar and critical analyses to better inform policymaking. This article elucidates the complex ways that climate change will affect gender and social relations, thereby highlighting the ways that existing policy narratives and adaptation programs might be better informed by geographical insights. To this end, the article encourages feminist and critical geographers to more forcefully and fruitfully engage with global debates on climate change. 
儘管气候变迁预期会增加众多全球南方人口的脆弱性、边缘化与苦难, 但不同的社会阶层将不均地感受到这些冲击。社会差异的多元交织, 特别是性别与阶级的轴线, 差异化了气候变迁冲击被感知与回应的方式。女性主义政治生态学与女性主义地理学的洞见, 可以透过细緻且批判的方式, 解释不同的社群如何理解、回应与处理变异性及不确定性, 因而阐明了气候变迁的性别化意涵。本文透过聚焦南亚区域, 凸显在地理上亦适用于其他地方的议题。气候变迁在南亚的性别化意涵特别深切, 因为父权常规、不均与不平等, 经常将女性和男性回应及处理社会经济关係剧烈变革的能力, 置放在差异化的位置, 但也同时凸显了社区对调节策略的回应中, 社会权力关係运作的复杂方式。此一现象, 在与水资源相关的生产工作与再生产工作的农业社会中特别显着, 而此般农业社会构成了南亚的绝大部份。当气候变迁预期会同时加剧生态退化 (例如水资源短缺) 以及与水相关的自然灾害 (例如洪水和飓风), 并因而改变性别与水的地理时, 着手从事仔细的多尺度与批判性分析以更佳地告知政策制定, 便显得格外重要。本文阐明气候变迁将会影响性别与社会关係的复杂方式, 从而凸显地理学洞见得以更佳地影响政策叙事和调适计画的方式。为此, 本文鼓励女性主义与批判地理学者更有力且多产地涉入气候变迁的全球辩论。
Aunque es de esperarse que con el cambio climático aumenten las vulnerabilidades, la marginalización y el sufrimiento de muchos en el Sur Global, los impactos se sentirán de manera desigual a través de los estratos sociales. Las interseccionalidades de diferencia social, en especial a lo largo de líneas de género y clase, diferencian las maneras como se experimentan los impactos del cambio climático, y cómo se reacciona ante los mismos. La perspicacia propia de la ecología política feminista y de la geografía feminista puede explicar el modo como diferentes grupos de gente entienden, reaccionan y se amoldan a la variabilidad e incertidumbres, con estilos variados y críticos, elucidando así las implicaciones que pueda tener el cambio climático por género. Tomando como área de estudio focal al Sur de Asia, el artículo hace énfasis sobre puntos clave que pudiesen tener aplicación geográfica en otras partes. Las implicaciones de género del cambio climático en aquella región son particularmente conmovedoras en cuanto normas patriarcales, inequidades y desigualdades, a menudo colocan a las mujeres y los hombres en posiciones diferenciadas en lo que concierne a su capacidad de responder y amoldarse a cambios dramáticos en las relaciones socioecológicas, pero que también ponen en primer plano las maneras complejas como las relaciones de poder social obran en las respuestas comunales sobre estrategias de adaptación. Esto es evidente particularmente en las tareas productivas y reproductivas relacionadas con el agua en las sociedades agrarias que predominan en el Sur de Asia. En la medida en que se espera que el cambio climático empeore tanto la degradación ecológica (por ejemplo, escasez hídrica) como los riesgos naturales relacionados con agua (por ejemplo, inundaciones, ciclones), transformando así las geografías de género-agua, se hace imperativo emprender cuidadosos análisis críticos y a escalas múltiples para documentar mejor los procesos formuladores de políticas. Este artículo esclarece el muy complejo panorama del modo como el cambio climático afectará las relaciones sociales y de género, destacando así las maneras como las actuales narrativas de políticas públicas y programas de adaptación podrían estar mejor fundamentados en los aportes de la ciencia geográfica. Con este propósito en mente, el artículo alienta a los geógrafos feministas y críticos a comprometerse más decidida y fructíferamente en los debates globales sobre cambio climático.

Keywords: adaptation, climate change, gender, geography, vulnerability, 调适, 气候变迁, 性别, 地理, 脆弱性, adaptación, cambio climático, geografía, vulnerabilidad, gênero

Topics: Class, Environment, Climate Change, Environmental Disasters, Feminisms, Gender, Gender Roles, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Equality/Inequality Regions: Asia, South Asia

Year: 2014

Private Security and Gender


Eichler, Maya. 2015. “Private Security and Gender.” In Routledge Handbook of Private Security Studies, edited by Rita Abrahamsen and Anna Leander, 158-67. London: Routledge.

Author: Maya Eichler


In recent years, a new set of scholarship that focuses on gender and private security in global politics has emerged. This feminist and feminist-informed critical gender scholarship examines private security processes, practices, and actors through the lens of gender. It uncovers how private security shapes and is shaped by masculinities, femininities, and gendered relations of power. While gender has become established as analytical category in the study of private security, the treatment of gender in industry and policy discourses continues to be problematic. It is therefore necessary to distinguish critical from problem-solving approaches to gender and private security. A problem-solving approach frames gender issues as problems which can be solved by adding more female employees or including language on gender-based violence into regulatory frameworks. But such an approach underestimates the extent to which gender matters in private security.

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Femininity/ies, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Private Military & Security

Year: 2015

Creating Cinderella? The Unintended Consequences of the Women Peace and Security Agenda for EU's Mediation Architecture


Haastrup, Toni. 2018. “Creating Cinderella? The Unintended Consequences of the Women Peace and Security Agenda for EU’s Mediation Architecture.” International Negotiation 23 (2): 218–37.

Author: Toni Haastrup


In 2000, the United Nations (UN) launched the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda by adopting Security Council Resolution 1325. The agenda, among other things, called for the greater inclusion of women in peace negotiation practices and structures. While the European Union (EU) has made commitments to implementing the WPS agenda, the literature has not yet captured the institutional dynamics of the EU as it seeks to translate the WPS agenda into reality. This article takes stock of this hitherto excluded area of research. It argues that mediation is the ‘Cinderella’ of the EU’s peace and security institution because it has been ignored as a site for the implementation of the WPS agenda with important implications. Using a feminist institutionalist framework, the article shows the ways in which institutional practices of change aimed at including the new perspectives prompted by the WPS agenda lead to unintended gendered consequences.

Keywords: WPS agenda, external relations, EU, UNSCR 1325, mediation, feminist institutionalism

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, peace and security, International Organizations, Peacebuilding, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325

Year: 2018

External Networks and Institutional Idiosyncrasies: the Common Security and Defense Policy and UNSCR 1325 on Women, Peace and Security


Joachim, Jutta, Andrea Schneiker, and Anne Jenichen. 2017. "External Networks and Institutional Idiosyncrasies: the Common Security and Defense Policy and UNSCR 1325 on Women, Peace and Security." Cambridge Review of International Affairs 30 (1): 105-24.

Authors: Jutta Joachim, Andrea Schneiker, Anne Jenichen


In 2008, the Council of the European Union (EU) adopted a ‘Comprehensive Approach’ that outlines a strategy for securing gender mainstreaming; two years later, the Council introduced a set of indicators to assess its implementation. The EU was responding to the United Nations Security Council’s call for regional institutions to assist in implementing Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325, adopted on 31 October 2000, concerning ‘women, peace and security’. This resolution sought to meet the ‘urgent need to mainstream a gender perspective into peacekeeping operations’. Considering that prior exposure to gender issues, resources and well-established relations with civil society and gender advocates are lacking, the adoption of both the Comprehensive Approach and the indicators, as well as the structures and procedures established since then as part of the EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy, requires some explanation. This article draws on feminist institutionalist approaches to argue that the impetus for change came from individuals and groups within the EU who were involved in external networks, both above and below the supranational level, who seized on institutional idiosyncrasies that also shaped the implementation of UNSCR 1325 in important ways.

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender Mainstreaming, peace and security, International Organizations, Peacekeeping, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325 Regions: Europe

Year: 2017

"Gendering" European Security: Policy Changes, Reform Coalitions and Opposition in the OSCE


Jenichen, Anne, Jutta Joachim, and Andrea Schneiker. 2018. "'Gendering' European Security: Policy Changes, Reform Coalitions and Opposition in the OSCE." European Security 27 (1): 1-19.

Authors: Anne Jenichen, Jutta Joachim, Andrea Schneiker


The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) has rarely been considered in scholarship on gender and security, even though it was one of the regional security organisations whose gender policy predated the United Nations Security Council’s call for more international attention to issues related to women, peace and security in October 2000. Based on an analysis of official OSCE documents and on semi-structured interviews, we trace the integration of gender issues in the OSCE and explore the rationale behind and the challenges associated with it. We identify two phases of gender policy change in the OSCE and show how the integration of UNSCR 1325 brought about an expansion of OSCE gender policy from an exclusive focus on “soft” security issues towards increased inclusion of gender in the area of “hard”security. Drawing on historical and feminist institutionalism, we argue that reform coalitions were crucial for the policy changes in the OSCE but that they encountered institutional and ideational barriers, which hampered implementation of the gender policy. In light of rising opposition, our analysis warns of a backlash that might jeopardise current achievements.

Keywords: gender, UNSCR 1325, women, peace and security, historical institutionalism, feminist institutionalism, Organisation for security and cooperation in Europe (OSCE)

Topics: Feminisms, Gender, Women, peace and security, International Organizations, Security, UN Security Council Resolutions on WPS, UNSCR 1325

Year: 2018


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