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FEATURE STORY

Building Capacity

May 25, 2011


The Gender Action Plan funded three regional workshops at which some 200 World Bank staff in the Sustainable Development Network (SDN), together withrepresentatives of other multilateral development banks and country-levelparticipants, developed their capacity to gender-inform infrastructure projects.

Improved access, service quality, and reliability of basic infrastructure are key to reducing the time women spend on household and community chores, and to expanding their economic opportunities.

To this end, the Bank organized three regional workshops under the GAP. Such capacity-building was particularly important, given the increased investments being made in infrastructure investments—which accounted for nearly 40 percent of the Bank’s commitments in 2010.

For two years in a row, the GAP supported the capacity-building of staff in other multilateral development banks, as well as client country partners. The first workshop was hosted in Manila, Philippines, in 2008 and brought together participants from South and East Asia. Successful projects were presented as lessons in gender-informing projects and participants engaged in brainstorming sessions on how to best establish a common platform for moving forward.

The following year, the event moved to Lima, Peru, where more than 100 staff and participants from 20 client countries in Latin America and the Caribbean came together. The Lima workshop highlighted the importance of:

Government commitment to gender equality as employment policy in infrastructure sectors; Consulting and involving both women and men in project preparation and implementation; and, Improving monitoring and impact evaluations of gender results to inform policies.

This March, infrastructure practitioners gathered in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to share knowledge and experiences on gender-informing infrastructure operations. The event was co-hosted by the African Development Bank and the World Bank, with sponsorship from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (GTZ). Some 120 infrastructure practitioners from over 30 countries participated and explored ways of integrating gender issues into sectors such as water supply and sanitation, transport, irrigation and energy.

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