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Gender mainstreaming

Gender mainstreaming (Credit: Eleanor Farmer / Oxfam)

At a glance

Gender mainstreaming ensures gender justice considerations are built into all stages of a programme design and implementation. 


The lives of women and men and the power relations between them are transformed through high quality programming, campaigns and humanitarian responses. These recognise women's specific experiences of poverty and inequality, and work with them to build on their knowledge, opportunities and skills to respond effectively to find lasting solutions.

Gender norms and inequalities (along with other factors such as age, race, religion, caste, etc.), affect the ability of women, men, boys, and girls to engage with, contribute to, and benefit from our work in any given context. Therefore, in all of our work we need to recognise and address the diversity of women's specific needs, experiences, skills and priorities so that all of our work benefits women as well as men, and seeks to actively redress existing gender imbalances. 

As well as our programmes which directly and explicitly address women's disadvantage due to gender inequalities, Oxfam is also involved in an ongoing process to ensure that all our work across development, humanitarian and campaigns programming incorporates the promotion of gender equality and women's rights.

This process, known as Gender Mainstreaming, involves gender justice considerations being built into all stages of a programme. This includes integrating strong gender and power analysis, explicit gender justice and women's rights objectives and specific actions to address structural gender discrimination, not just its symptoms. We also work in partnership with gender justice allies and women's rights organisations.

As an organisation, we are committed to building the capacity of staff and partners to focus on gender justice and women's rights as well as ensuring gender is mainstreamed in all policies, structures, practices and beliefs which we employ within our organisation.