The FAO Gender and Development Plan of Action (2002-2007) reflects changes in perspective based on experience and new paradigms that emerged from international conferences in the 1990s and that generated a broad-based consensus on the approach to gender and development (Environment and Development, 1992; Human Rights, 1993; Population and Development, 1994; Social Development, 1995; Human Settlement, 1996).

The Plan is FAO's framework for follow-up to relevant recommendations in the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action of the Fourth World Conference on Women held in 1995, Article 14 on rural women in the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), and the outcome document of the Special Session of the General Assembly, entitled Women 2000: gender equality, development and peace for the twenty-first century, held in June 2000 (Beijing +5 Review).

The Plan echoes and expands on the objectives of the Rome Declaration on World Food Security and the World Food Summit Plan of Action, which was adopted in 1996 and which clearly reflects the importance of gender in all its seven commitments. It integrates the outcome of the High-Level Consultation on Rural Women and Information, convened by FAO in Rome in October 1999, including The Strategy for Action entitled Gender and Food Security - The Role of Information.

Finally, it is the Organization's continuing response to the imperative to promote gender equality and the empowerment of women as effective ways to combat poverty, hunger and disease and to stimulate development that is truly sustainable, as expressed in the United Nations Millennium Declaration

The designations employed and the presentation of material in this information product do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.

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FAO 2003