Gender analysis

What is a gender analysis?

Gender analysis is the systematic effort to understand the roles of men and women and the social, economic and/or power relations between all genders within a given context, such as that of a household, community, region or organisation. A gender analysis examines the relationships and any inequalities between women and men, and boys and girls, with regards to:

  • Roles and identities
  • Needs, priorities and interests
  • Access to power and resources
  • Exercise of power

Why is a gender analysis important?

To fully understand the issues, problems, needs and opportunities for men and women in a specific context, it is essential to do a gender analysis. Through the analysis, gender inequalities can be identified and greater understandings developed in relation to existing gender roles, responsibilities and power dynamics. It will also give you insights into obstacles different groups might face in becoming involved with your project, as well as into the underlying causes for gender inequalities.

A gender analysis contributes to a better understanding of the way gender affects people’s opportunities and needs, which provides the basis for ensuring that the needs of everyone are adequately addressed in the project.

How can I do a gender analysis?

A gender analysis can be done through a combination of different methods, such as desk research, stakeholder consultations and surveys with the general public. Many methodologies are available to do a gender analysis.

BBC Media Action developed gender analysis guidelines specifically for media development projects. You can find a list of guidelines and methodologies below.

Worldwide, a lot of data and resources are available that could inform your gender analysis. You will also need to collect additional, context-specific data through, for example, interviews or expert meetings.

Gender Analysis Frameworks
BBC Media Action has a comprehensive guidance document on conducting a gender analysis for media development projects.
Overview of different gender analysis frameworks by Equilo.
NZAID Gender Analysis Guideline provides an overview of different common gender analysis frameworks, including the pros and cons of using them.
Gender and Social Inclusion Analysis in the Gender and Social Inclusion Toolkit of CIVICUS (Chapter 3).

When you have concluded the gender analysis, you can continue to the next step: planning.