Women in Development and Gender and Development

Topics: Gender, Gender role, Sociology Pages: 5 (1383 words) Published: February 8, 2013
a)Compare and contrast WID and Gad approaches to involvement of women in development.{12} b)Which of the two approaches have contributed more to the involvement of women in development activities?{8} a)According to Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia,Women in development (WID) is an approach to development projects that emerged in the 1970s ,calling for treatment of women’s issues in development projects. Later ,the Gender and Development (GAD) approach proposed more emphasis on gender relations rather than seeing women’s issues in isolation. Reeves,H. and Baden,S.(2000:33) stated that the WID approach calls for greater attention to women in development policy and practice ,and the need to integrate them into the development process. The approach was a reaction to women being seen as passive beneficiaries of development. It marked an important corrective, highlighting the fact that women need to be integrated into the development process as active agents if efficient and effective development is to be achieved. Women‘s significant productive contribution was made visible, although their reproductive role was downplayed. Women‘s subordination was seen in terms of their exclusion from the market sphere, and limited access to and control over resources. Programmes informed by a WID approach addressed women’s practical needs by, for example, creating employment and income-generating opportunities, improving access to credit and to education. The main features of the WID approach according to Mawere,D.(p39) are as follows: * WID views women’s lack of participation as the main problem. Women‘s subordination is, therefore, is seen in terms of their exclusion from the market sphere, and limited access to and control over resources. * Integration of women into existing structures of development is viewed as the solution to the problem. The approach seeks to integrate women into economic development through legal and administrative support. * WID advances a number of strategies aimed at addressing the problem under focus. Through WID, projects such as transfer of technology, extension services, credit facilities, and other interventions that have a welfare orientation especially projects on hygiene, literacy or childcare are implemented. * WID also focuses on advocacy strategies for more equal participation of women in education, employment and other spheres of society. * The other strategy is to increase women’s ability to manage the household (family planning). * All these strategies are aimed at increasing women’s productivity and income. * The approach also examines the sexual division of labour and the differential impact of gender in development. Furthermore it recognizes that women and men’s experience of development and societal changes are different.

Mawere,D.(P39-40) cited the achievements and limitations of the WID approach as follows:

* The WID approach has enhanced people’s understanding of women’s development needs, particularly the need to improve statistical measures of women’s work and to provide women with more opportunities for education and employment (Overholt, et al. 1984). The approach has provided a checklist for ensuring women’s status in societies, a checklist that is helpful and accessible to development technocrats. * Programmes informed by the WID approach address women’s practical needs by creating wage employment, income-generating opportunities, and improving access to credit and to education. * Its presence at the UN helped to push for social legislation that enhanced women’s civil and political rights in some countries. * It has also been successful in helping secure a prominent place for women’s issues at the United Nations (UN). * The UN declared 1975 to 1985, the Decade for Women. A major achievement of the decade has been the establishment of women in development...
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