Gender in Emergency Annex


Manuals/Guidelines/Major Documents

from Bridge Reports at


Author(s): Byrne, Bridget
Document Type: Article Pages: 10 In: IDS Bulletin, Vol. 27, No. 3, pp. 31-40
Date Publ.: 1996
In this article, Byrne concisely proceeds through the reasons behind viewing violence and conflict through a gender perspective, how perceptions change during times of conflict, and the implications of gender analysis in humanitarian intervention in conflict situations.

from or from the Commission on the Advancement of Women home page


by Bridget Byrne with Sally Baden, 1995, 60 pages
Report commissioned by the WID desk, European Commission, Directorate General for Development
The document makes a case for the comprehensive incorporation of gender analysis in the design of emergency and humanitarian assistance programmes. The approach is justified in terms of the differing capacities and coping strategies between the sexes, and the ways these may influence action in crisis situations, and gives particular consideration to socio-culturally based power relations within the household.

GENDER AND HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE: a select annotated bibliography

(Bibliography 3) 1994, 40 pages, Compiled for the Office of Women in Development of the
US Agency for International Development from Bridge Reports at


Volume 1: overview (Report 34)
by Bridget Byrne, 1995, 61 pages
Keywords (Country): Guatemala; Somalia; Cambodia; Rwanda; Algeria; Eritrea
Report prepared at the request of the Netherlands' Special
Programe on WID, Ministry of Foreign Affairs on a
conference on gender, conflict and development of the
Vrouwenberaad Ontwikkelingssamenwerking
In this report, Byrne concisely proceeds through the reasons behind viewing violence and conflict through a gender perspective, how perceptions change during times of conflict, and the implications of gender analysis in humanitarian intervention in conflict situations.
Gender, conflict and development. Volume 2: case studies: Cambodia, Rwanda, Kosova, Somalia, Algeria, Guatemala and Eritrea (Report 35) by Bridget Byrne, Rachel Marcus and Tanya Powers-Stevens, 1995, 147 pages
Report prepared at the request of the Netherlands' Special Programe on WID, Ministry of Foreign Affairs on a conference on gender, conflict and development of the Vrouwenberaad Ontwikkelingssamenwerking


The seminar Effective Gender Integration in Disaster and Refugee Assistance: An NGO-Donor Dialogue on Strategies that Work was held in February, and the workshop Effective Initial Stage Response to Disaster and Refugee Assistance: Gender Programming Lessons from the Field took place at InterAction’s Forum in April. These meetings represented joint efforts of three InterAction committees: the Commission on the Advancement of Women, the Committee on Migration and Refugee Affairs, and the Disaster Response Committee. This document, which covers both meetings, is offered as a contribution of the InterAction community to the evolution of new ways of working in the field, aimed at enabling both women and men to be full participants and full beneficiaries in humanitarian and refugee assistance.
from or from


Author(s): Kasmann, Elke; Körner, Markus
Document Type: Guide (Draft) Pages: 75
Publisher: InterAktion City: Bonn Date Publ.: 1996
Language(s): English
Keywords (Country): Mozambique; Eritrea; Somalia
Admitting that there is very little practical experience on gender-specific relief programs, these guidelines provide insights into the everyday life of women in situations of crisis in order to illustrate means of incorporating a gender perspective into even the most urgent emergency phases of action. The guidelines are focuses on providing examples for project planners and field staff in Africa. Although the aim is to address projects operating in emergency and post-war situations, the writing concentrates almost exclusively on refugee issues and camp-like contexts.  


Author(s): Voutira, Dr. Eftihia
Document Type: Research Report Pages: 103
Publisher: Refugee Studes Programme City: Oxford Date Publ.: 1995
Language(s): English
Keywords (Organisation): WFP
The document presents a comprehensive deliberation of the theory and evolution of the concept of gender from the perspective of development programs and humanitarian assistance. The author focuses on the role of women in food distribution practices, and evaluates operational needs for more effective relief delivery,
with particular consideration of coordination among humanitarian aid agencies and their approach to theself-reliance of target populations.


Author(s): Eurostep
Document Type: Occasional Paper Pages: 12
Publisher: Eurostep City: Brussels
Language(s): English
Keywords (Organisation): UNHCR
This 12-page background paper on gender and emergencies was prepared for the May 1996 meeting ofthe Development Council. Concentrating on emergency situations resulting from conflict, the paper gives an outline of current practice and suggested policy change in the involvement of women in emergency programming.


Author(s): Alexander, Elsie M.
Document Type: Research Report Pages: 28
Date Publ.: 1995
Keywords (Country): Malawi; Mozambique; Angola; Zaire
Essentially an in-house evaluation of four field programs, the report provides insight into the difficulties of incorporating gender considerations into emergency planning and programming with implementing partners. The review of the literature gives a global view of gender policies for international agencies, pointing to the lack of developed research in this area.


Author(s): Fall, Yassine
Document Type: Research Report Pages: 40 Date Publ.: 1996
Keywords (Country): Rwanda
While the study of gender considerations in relief programs is gaining ground, this report takes a new slant on implications for development by discussing how women’s marginalization during relief operations leads to their poor health and malnutrition, thus having a direct impact on longer-term development projects.


Author(s): Cammack, Diana, Dr.
Document Type: Situation Report
City: Lilongwe Date Publ.: 1995
Keywords (Organisation): WFP
Keywords (Country): Malawi
"The study and its purpose is to determine whether women have benefited from, had control over and had access to food aid equally with men. Emphasis during investigations and writing was placed on the gender sensitivity of the institutions involved - World Food Programme, Malawi government, NGO’s World Vision and Canadian Physicians for Aid and Relief (CPAR) - women’s participation in project planning and implementation, on staffing of the two programmes, and on the use and control of food at the household and village level.


Author(s): UN/DHA
Document Type: Periodical Pages: 64
In: DHA NEWS, April/May 1997, No. 2
Publisher: UN/DHA City: Geneva Date Publ.: 1997
Keywords (Organisation): UN/DHA
The document brings together articles on women in emergencies by international journalists, academics andspecialists involved in emergency management, presenting a spectrum of reflections, experiences and practices. Papers thus explore post-war trauma, the particular vulnerability of adolescent girls, and the significant role of women in societal rehabilitation.

Development in Conflict: The Gender Dimension

Authors: Judy El Bushra and Eugenia Piza-Lopez
Document Type: Book
Summary: This paper is intended for development workers who need clearer practical and
theoretical insights into the problems of integrating a gender perspective into conflict-related work. 

Newsletters/Small Publications



Author(s): APRODEV; ECHO
Document Type: Conference Report Pages: 11
In: Brussels, 4-5 November 1997
Publisher: APRODEV, Date Publ.: 1996
Keywords (Organisation): European Union
Summary: The document is an account of the proceedings and discussions of the APRODEV-ECHO Seminar on Gender and Emergencies, held 4-5 November 1996. The meeting provided forum for sharing experiences on the integration of gender into humanitarian aid operations, and producing guidelines for the European Union on gender sensitive emergency aid.


Mainstreaming Gender in the Humanitarian Response to Emergencies

IASC Working Group XXXXVI Meeting, Background Document
April 22-23, Rome (Inter-Agency Standing Committee)
The purpose of this paper is to provide a summary overview of the differential impact of emergencies and crisis situations on women and girls, men and boys. It will also discuss the policy issues and implications of a gender perspective. It will present options for the application of humanitarian principles as well as the appropriate responses needed to address the specific needs of women and girls in pre-conflict, emergency, natural disaster, and post-crisis settings.

Development and Gender In Brief

Integrating Gender into Emergency Responses
(Issue 4) from Bridge Reports at

Development and Gender In Brief Conflict and Development (Issue 3)
from Bridge Reports at from

Links--Oxfam's Newsletter on Gender

November 1997
"Guinea Pigs for Andean Women: a new emergency response" by Fiona Gell, Programme Management Assistant for Oxfam GB South Asia

Anderson, Mary B., 1994, ‘Understanding the Disaster-Development Continuum: Gender Analysis is the Essential Tool’’, in Focus on Gender, Vol 2, No 1, pp7-10.

Eade, D and S. Williams (1995) ‘The Oxfam Handbook of Development and Relief’, Volume I pp184-190 and Volume II pp 883-886, (Oxfam Publications).

Network on Humanitarian Assistance, 1994, ‘European University Degree in International Humanitarian Assistance’, Anthropology Module, (European Commission, European Community Humanitarian Office, July).

Woroniuk, B, J. Schalkwyk, and H. Thomas, 1997, ‘Overview: Gender Equality and Emergency Assistance/Conflict Resolution’, Report Prepared for Humanitarian Assistance Division, SIDA, January.

Myers, M., 1994, ‘Women and Children First: Introducing a Gender Strategy into Disaster

Preparedness’, in Focus on Gender, Vol 2, No 1, pp14-16.

El Bushra, J. and E. Pisa Lopez, 1993, ‘Development in Conflict: the Gender Dimension’, Report of an Oxfam AGRA East Workshop held in Thailand, 1-4 February 1993, (Oxfam Publications).

International Committee of the Red Cross, 1996, ‘Women and War’ (ICRC Publications).

Bhatt, Mihir. Gender and Disasters: Perspectives on Women as Victims of Di sasters. Discussion Paper. Disaster Mitigation Institute, Gulbai Tekra, Ahmedabad India. 1995.

Enarson E. and Morrow H. The Gendered Terrain of Disaster: Through Women’s Eyes. Greenwood Press. 1998.

Krishnaraj M. Gender Issues in Disaster Management. Gender Technology and Development, vol. 1, no. 3. 1997.

League of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Working with Women in Emergencies. Field Studies Paper #2. Geneva. 1991.

El-Bushra, J., and E. Piza Lopez, 1993, 'Development in conflict: the gender dimension,' Report of an Oxfam AGRA East Workshop held in Pattaga, Thailand, 1-4th February, Oxfam UK/I, ACORD

Ferris, E., 1993, 'Women, war and peace,' Research Report No. 14, Life and Peace Institute, Uppsala, Sweden

Mooney, Erin. "Internal Displacement and Gender." Humanitarian Principles Workshop: Focus on Child Rights Approach to Complex Emergencies and Internal Displacement. Brussels: UNICEF, Office of Emergence Programmes and Brussels Office, 1/10/98.

UNDHA. Women in Emergencies. DHA News 22. 1997.

Wilde, Vicki and Marijke Mooij. Participatory Gender Analysis for Community-level Disaster Response Planning. WFP: Nairobi, 2-12 June 1998.

Wiest, R., Mocellin, J., and Motsisi, D., 1992, The Needs of Women and Children in Emergencies, University of Manitoba Winnipeg.

Walsh, Martha, 1998. Time for Change: Food Aid and Development. Section on Women in Food Aid, Interventions: Impacts and Issuues, 23-24 October 1998, Rome, Italy. Only this section, "Women in Food Aid Intervention", was written by Martha Walsh of the Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex, United Kingdom. Various sections of the paper have different authors.

Anderson, M.B., 1994, ‘Understanding the disaster-development continuum. Gender analysis is the essential tool’, in Focus on Gender, 2 (1), Oxfam, Oxford

Begum, R., 1993, ‘Women in environmental disasters: the 1991 cyclone in Bangladesh’ Focus on Gender, Vol. 1 (1)

Bureau for Humanitarian Response WID strategy, n.d. ‘Women in Disasters’, USAID

el Bushra, J. and Piza-Lopez, E., 1994, ‘Gender, war and food’, in Macrae, J. and Zwi, A., War and Hunger. Rethinking International Responses to Complex Emergencies, Zed Publications and Save the Children (UK), London

el Bushra, J., n.d., ‘Thematic Paper 3: Gender planning in conflict situations’

Porter, F., 1993, ‘Gendering famine relief: a look at famine and famine relief from a gender perspective’, Dissertation for MA, IDS, Sussex

Shaw, R., 1992, ‘‘Nature’, ‘culture’ and disasters. Floods and gender in Bangladesh’ in Croll, E. and Parkin, D., (Eds.), Bush Base: Forest Farm, Culture, Environment and Development, Routledge, London

Wiest, R.E., Mocellin, J.S,P., Motsisi, D.T., 1992, The Needs of Women and Children in Disasters and Emergencies, prepared for the Disaster Management training Programme of the United Nations Development Programme and the United Nations Disaster Relief Co-ordinator, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg


*Begum, R., 1993, 'Women in environmental disasters: the 1991 cyclone in Bangladesh.', Focus on Gender, vol. 1 (1): pp.34-39 2
On 29 April 1991, a cyclone hit the eastern coast of the Bay of Bengal. The force of the storm was concentrated between Chittagong to the north and Cox's Bazar to the south. Casualty rates and destruction were catastrophic. The death toll of women became the commodity used to attract the sympathy of the relief donors. The real needs of the women in the wake of this disaster,however, were ignored by the Bangladesh government and by the relief agencies. Women had died in greater numbers than men, not just because of their physical weakness, but because of Bangladesh's male-dominated socialstructure, underpinned by religious traditions, which restricts the mobility of women. During the cyclone, many women died risking their lives to save their children. When markets were damaged, leaving no food, Oxfam was the first NGO to bring in supplies. This paper outlines the efforts of a female relief worker trying to help victims of the cyclone and describes the various problems that were encountered, often because of her sex. A team of volunteers was set up from an NGO called TUTTARAN. Proper co-ordination among the different relief teams and with the government relief efforts should be maintained. In the short term, overlap of relief programmes must be avoided to ensure all opportunities are open to everyone. For the longer term they must develop arrangements for strategic planning.

Greet, P., 1994, 'Making good policy into good practice', Focus on Gender, vol. 2 (1): pp.11-13
This paper looks at the role of women and the way they should be brought into development policy. It first examines their role in drought-stricken Mozambique, where women carried out their normal daily activities which kept their families alive, such as carrying heavy bundles of firewood and water and searching for food. They bore the strongest impact of the drought. When development workers and observers visit such areas, men tend to be the ones who speak up for the women, often giving a distorted picture of what really happens and the true picture of women. There has been a greater emphasis on providing more effectively for women by the UN and NGOs. However, the recurrence of emergencies or crises demonstrates the failure of development strategies. Part of the failure has been the result of marginalizing women's needs and women's role in production and development. There has been a failure to recognise the central role played by women. Some suggestions for ways to redress this situation are outlined. The first is the notion of gender awareness, where responses to and perceptions of women should be included; they should be consulted. Secondly, so as properly to address given situation, it is important to have an informed picture of the affected populations. Once this is done, it is possible to provide assistance in a way which is sensitive to women's needs. Finally, training and effective staff development policies should focus on strategies to bring more women into decision-making positions in relief and development organisations.

*Maybin, E., Tokle, M., 1994, 'Forty seconds that shook their world: the 1993 earthquake in India.', Focus on Gender, vol. 2 (1): pp.34-38
Following the 1993 earthquake in Maharashtra, India, masses of people responded with donations and assistance. The majority of volunteers weremen, and it was important to ensure that this did not mean that the experience and particular needs of women were not fully identified and addressed. In the first weeks after the disaster, women suffered increased stress because of the lack of privacy. Other problems related to women's domestic roles as managers of food and water. There were complaints about the poor quality of relief grain, the lack of fresh vegetables and the difficulties and cost of cooking with kerosene rather than on wood-fired stoves destroyed by the disaster. Water was more liable to contamination and spillage. This paper consists of two short articles, Rebuilding shattered lives (E. Maybin) and Some problems women are facing (M.Tokle). The particular vulnerability of widows is highlighted. The denial of their rights to land and property and some of the practical difficulties and women's anxieties for the future are outlined.

Rivers, J.P.W., 1982, 'Women and children last: an essay on sex discrimination in disasters', Disasters, 6 (4)

*Walker, B. (Ed.), 1994, 'Women and emergencies.' Focus on Gender, No. 4, 64p.,
Oxfam Publications Department, OXFAM, Oxford, UK

The papers in this book consider some of the dilemmas of emergency relief operations, and look at the experience of women in situations of crisis, their particular vulnerabilities, and their capacities and strengths. The need to take a development approach to emergencies and to support women in their role as family managers, and also as producers and providers is stressed. It is the poor who are most vulnerable in emergency situations, and women are particularly badly affected, since they form the highest proportion of refugees and displaced populations, and their poverty and powerlessness in many societies means that their needs often go unrecognised. Seeing people as a resource, rather than as passive victims, and looking at their skills and strengths, should be an integral part of the approach by relief organisations in order to help the community to recover from the disaster and build for the future. The 13 papers provide case studies from a wide range of countries where disasters have occurred, including Zaire, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and include droughts, emergency food distribution and earthquakes. N.B. Some of these case studies are included in this bibliography.


Swiss, S, and Giller, J., 1993, 'Rape As A Crime Of War - A Medical Perspective Physicians Human Rights, Women's Program', Journal Of The American Medical Association, JAMA, Vol. 270, No. 5, pp.612-615
Although widespread, rape of women has been an under-reported aspect of military conflict until recently. The current war in the former Yugoslavia has focused attention on the use of rape as a deliberate strategy to undermine community bonds and weaken resistance to aggression. In addition to providing treatment for individual survivors, the medical community has an important role to play in investigating and documenting incidents of rape. Such documentation can help to establish the magnitude of rape in war and hold perpetrators accountable. Since rape in war affects not only the individual but also the family and community to which the survivor belongs, the restoration of social and community bonds is central to the process of healing and must be addressed within the specific cultural setting.

*Porter, F, 1993, 'Gendering famine relief; a look at famine and famine relief from a gender perspective', MA dissertation, IDS, mimeo

Stoltenberg, K., 1991, 'Working with women in emergency relief and rehabilitation programmes', League of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, Geneva

*Ahmed, Y., 1994, 'A disaster-preparedness workshop in Pakistan', Focus on Gender, vol. 2 (1): p.39-40
This paper examines an NGO set up by Oxfam Pakistan and PATTAN to undertake flood-preparedness and mitigation, relief and development work in the riverine areas of Punjab. A workshop was held to discuss disaster preparedness. In September 1992, floods had devastated much of Pakistan; the purpose of the workshop was to help NGO workers to prepare for any future emergency by collective reflection on the lessons learnt in the floods and practical training in disaster response techniques and planning for future disaster. Gender issues were an important focus in the workshop. Participants said that many women did not receive relief. The purpose of the session was to explore and analyse the implications of gender in an emergency situation. Some role-plays were carried out. The recommendations presented by participants in the session were: that women should be included in NGOs as members who can look into development and emergency relief projects from the perspective of gender; men should respect women's unpaid labour and share household responsibilities because women carry a double and sometimes triple burden; in emergency relief, goods should be distributed through women; and to bring about a positive change in the status and conditions of women, an emergency situation can be used to break the conventions and tradition which prevent women from participating in the process of social development.

*Anderson, M. B., 1994, 'Understanding the disaster-development continuum: gender analysis is the essential tool', Focus on Gender, vol. 2 (1), pp.7-10
Development agencies and NGOs are increasingly focusing their attention on understanding the relationships between disasters and development. This has been motivated by an increased number of disasters world-wide and a reduction in overall aid budgets in many donor countries, with an accompanying shift from development programmes and towards disaster response. Both development and relief workers are seeking ways to use available relief funds to meet the emergency needs of disaster victims and support change towards long-term development. One tool which can contribute significantly to addressing root causes and which can support effective, efficient and equitable long-term development is gender analysis. The first step in understanding and preparing to deal with root causes is to analyse why some people are vulnerable to disasters and others not. Often an understanding of vulnerability and the development of strategies for overcoming it can be advanced through gender analysis. Women tend to be more vulnerable than men, as they have limited access to resources and are poorly paid. Traditional expectations and home-based responsibilities limit women's mobility and opportunities for political involvement, education, information, etc. Understanding their vulnerability allows an insight into strategies to deal with the causes rather than the symptoms. It also helps to identify the ways in which men are vulnerable. The failure to identify gendered roles, and to plan programmes with them in mind, has resulted in the inequitable delivery of disaster relief assistance and inadequate attention to the potential long-term outcomes of short-term interventions.

Work in Progress

Alliances for Africa are requesting all informtion relating to gender in emergency as they aim to establish their own set of guidelines in the near future. They are very keen on hearing what other organizations have been doing in this field.
Please email at :

The Gender in Training Modules are being prepared for participants in Peace Support Operations. The Modules are being developed by the Canadian and British Governments, by the Lester Pearson Peacekeeping Centre.

John Hopkins Regugee and Diasaster Studies Program is developing a catalogue which will have an index for gender in emergency type documents. Please inform them of new publications, manuals etc at

The Un Security Council open Debate in Women, Peace and Security discussed the issue of gender in emergency. Information can be retreived at

Info for other UN Agencies and relevant NGOs

Institute of Development Studies (IDS)
University of Sussex
Brighton BN1 9RE
Tel: (1273) 606.261
Fax: (1273) 621.202; 691.647
Tel: (1273) 678.269

International Center for Research on Women (ICRW)
1717 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Suite 302
Washington, D.C. 20036
Tel: (202) 797-0007
Fax: (202) 797-0020

Oxfam United Kingdom & Ireland
274 Bradbury Road
Oxford OX2 7DZ
General Tel.: (44.1865) 311311, 312603
General Fax: (44.1865) 312410
Distribution Tel.: (44.1202) 715555
Distribution Fax: (44.1202) 715556

Swedish International Development Authority (SIDA)
Gender Office
Birger Jarlsgatan 61
S-105 25
Tel: (46.8) 728-5100
Fax: (46.8) 698-5656; 698-5642; 612-6380; 322.141

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
3 U.N. Plaza
New York, New York 10017
Tel: (212) 326-7000
Fax: (212) 888-7465

United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM)*
304 East 45th Street
New York, New York 10017
Tel: (212) 906-6435
Fax: (212) 906-6705

*All UNIFEM publications are distributed by Women, Ink. United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)
220 East 42nd Street
New York, New York 10017
Tel: (212) 297-5000
Fax: (212) 557-6416

United States Agency for International Development (USAID) USAID/R&D/POP/P&E
1601 N. Kent Street
Room 711
Rosslyn, VA 22209
Tel: (703) 875-5245
Fax: (703) 875-4693
Room 711, SA-18
Washington, DC 20523-1819

Women in Development (WID), USAID
1815 N. Fort Myers Drive
9th Floor
Rosslyn, VA
Tel: (703) 816-0291
Fax: (703) 816-0266

Women, Ink. (UNIFEM titles are exclusively available through Women, Ink.)
777 UN Plaza
Third Floor
New York, New York 10017
Tel: (212) 687-8633
Fax: (212) 661-2704

World Bank
1818 H Street NW
Washington, D.C. 20433
Tel: (202) 477-1234
Fax: (202) 477-6391

Web References

An academic network but as yet not much information is contained on the web
page. Does have a list of members and their specialities/contact details,
plus bibliography

Contains various articles, policy documents and current mission reports.

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs - OCHA-Online

The World Disasters Report Homepage at the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

The ReliefWeb Home page

Overseas Development Institute's Relief and Rehabilitation Network,

The UN Internet Gateway on the Advancement and Empowerment of Women:

United Nations Development Fund for Women:

The United Nations Division for the Advancement of Women:

UNDP Links on Poverty, Environment, Gender and Governance:

The Worldbank Group: African Region on Gender :

World Food Programme, Women and Gender:

UN Economic and Social Development: General Information on Women: