A workshop on the subject of “Gender-inclusive infrastructure” has taken place
On 19th of May, a workshop on the subject of “Gender-inclusive infrastructure” took place. The event was organized in cooperation with the International Finance Corporation and the Public-Private Infrastructure Advisory Facility of PPIAF to discuss gender inclusion in PPP projects.
As of today, gender equality and ensuring equal access of all segments of the population of territorial communities to socially significant services is a cross-cutting issue that affects all policies, programs, events and development projects, including infrastructure development.
PPP project initiators face challenges in creating conditions that would ensure equal opportunities for stakeholders, beneficiaries and beneficial owners.
“Any inequality does not only cause political, economic, financial, social and human losses but also has a negative impact on the development of local communities. Therefore, infrastructure development is impossible without the use of gender mainstreaming”, noted Julia Skubak, the head of the Investment Department of the Ministry for Development of Economy, Trade and Agriculture of Ukraine.
Gender-oriented planning and preparation for PPP project implementation should be an all-encompassing process, covering everything from analysis to the integration of a gender perspective in all stages of the project life cycle. At the same time, this type of planning requires gender mainstreaming at all stages of the decision-making process, including preparation, ratification and implementation of PPP projects aimed at infrastructure innovation and development.
After all, stakeholders, beneficiaries and beneficial owners are, first and foremost, women and men who have different needs, depending on their age, health and other factors. Those factors shape their needs for infrastructure, employment, education, cultural activities, healthcare, etc. At the same time, it is necessary to take into account the special needs of vulnerable groups of citizens who endure higher stress levels and are exposed to a much higher risk of poverty, which exacerbates the problem of social stratification.
Keynote speakers at the workshop were the representatives of the International Finance Corporation: Senior Operations Officer in the Sustainable Infrastructure Advisory team of Global Infrastructure department, Adriana Maria Eftimie and Investment Officer with IFC’s Transaction Advisory Department, Edona Pacarada.
Ms. Eftimie has illuminated the issue of gender, namely the notions of gender equality and gender norms. She has provided examples and statistics that confirm the social and financial effectiveness of the gender inclusion approach. Thus, BHP Billiton company has reported a 15% improvement in performance in its 10 most gender-inclusive operations.
Adriana Maria Eftimie has also enlightened the participants about the challenges which many face when creating and developing gender-inclusive infrastructure and PPP projects, in general.
Edona Pacarada has described practical approaches on how to ensure gender inclusivity and focus in PPP projects. To create and build high-quality infrastructure, accessible to different groups of people, users, (beneficiaries and beneficial owners), it is important to employ a gender-oriented approach at all stages of the PPP project life cycle.
Therefore, during the identification of potential PPP projects, it is necessary to conduct gender analysis, ensure gender-sensitive stakeholder engagement and use gender-related criteria for PPP prioritization.
During the preparation to implementation of PPP projects, gender-related issues should be addressed in terms of reference for the services of advisors, in the assessment of economic and technical feasibility, in technical requirements and performance indicators (KPI), in commercial viability, environmental feasibility, in the analysis of the social impact (or assessment of social feasibility), as well as legal feasibility, that are conducted in preparation of PPP project implementation (and are required for the Concept Note and the Feasibility Study).
When designing a PPP contract and conducting a tender to determine a private partner, it is important to include gender aspects in individual provisions of the partnership agreement, in accordance with the previous evaluation of the project, as well as to ensure equal access and equality of opportunity during the competition.
You can learn more about it, by downloading the presentation of the speakers from the International Finance Corporation at the link below.
For reference: The World Bank Group prepared the primer ” Gender Equality, Infrastructure and PPPs” as an important first step toward gender equality in PPP projects- https://library.pppknowledgelab.org/documents/5720