Development policy

Authored by: Petra Debusscher

The Routledge Handbook of Gender and EU Politics

Print publication date:  March  2021
Online publication date:  March  2021

Print ISBN: 9781138485259
eBook ISBN: 9781351049955
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9781351049955-27

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Abstract

Despite its generally critical nature, gender has been largely absent from the mainstream literature on development policy. As the European Union (EU) has long claimed gender equality to be part of its core values and identity in the world, a gender perspective is indispensable to understand the EU’s role as a global actor. Scholarship has shown a rhetorical emphasis on gender, but when push comes to shove, the results are uneven: gender is not systematically mainstreamed across the EU’s development policy and often instrumentalised to support economic goals. It has shown how seemingly gender-neutral policy is gendered and gendering, both reflecting as well as producing (unequal) gender relations. This scholarship has also investigated gender imbalances and male work cultures in EU development policy-making, demonstrating that ‘who decides what matters’ is a highly gendered matter, with real life consequences for men and women across the world.

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