The Gender and Development Network was recently invited to give evidence to the International Development Committee inquiry on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Jessica Woodroffe, our Director, highlighted that gender is a cross-cutting issue throughout the SDGs, and that promoting gender equality can drive the achievement of each of the SDGs.
When asked how to ensure that the SDGs are implemented, Jessica suggested that DfID should address the underlying causes of gender inequality. Highlighting the importance of women’s economic empowerment, she advocated a greater focus on unpaid care, saying that the unpaid care target in the SDGs is one of the most potentially transformative of the whole document. Jessica also underlined the importance of addressing social norms and how assumptions about the roles of women and men threaten the achievement of the SDGs – and must be tackled at their root.
How should these changes happen? One key way of achieving change is a ‘women’s fund’ – a fund specifically for women’s organisations. Women’s organisations are some of the most transformative and cost-efficient ways of reaching the most marginalised people – and small amounts of funding can make a huge difference when targeted directly to women’s organisations.
More information, including past evidence sessions, on the International Development Committee’s inquiry into the SDGs can be found here. A video recording of the 1 December session, where Jessica gave evidence, can be viewed here, or you can read a transcript of the session here.
You can also listen to the recording of the session via the audio file below (from 15:10):