Social Protection

Changing rural women's lives through gender transformative social protection

Resource Type: Publication
Published: 26/10/2023

In rural areas, most women and girls face many challenges because of structural gender discrimination and inequality. These inequalities are kept in place by unequal power relations and discriminatory norms, beliefs and practices that create and maintain gender gaps in development outcomes.

A gender transformative approach aims to change these deep-rooted gender inequalities and transform unequal gender roles and relations. Although there is a growing interest in understanding how social protection policies and programmes can contribute to gender transformative outcomes, social protection interventions rarely directly address gender norms and power dynamics in households and beyond.

This paper explores how social protection can be gender transformative. It reviews evidence of how social protection can contribute to gender transformative outcomes and provides case examples of gender transformative programming. It also identifies entry points to incorporate a gender transformative lens more systematically into the objectives and design of social protection programmes.

The paper was developed by FAO’s Social Protection team in collaboration with the Joint Programme on Gender Transformative Approaches for Food Security and Nutrition (JP GTA). The JP GTA is implemented by FAO, IFAD and WFP in collaboration with and through financial support from the European Union.