Gender considerations for disaster risk financing in Fiji

Authored by: Alexandra Dudley, Jennifer Phillips, and Jennifer Cissé

Categories: Humanitarian Emergencies
Sub-Categories: Climate and Environment, Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience (DRRR)
Region: East Asia and the Pacific
Year: 2023
Citation: Dudley, Alexandra, Jennifer Phillips, and Jennifer Cissé. Gender considerations for disaster risk financing in Fiji. The United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security, 2023.

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Executive Summary

Extreme weather events such as storms and cyclones have devastating effects on many small island developing states (SIDS). Women and men are affected differently by these events due to several factors, including their roles in society and levels of financial inclusion. These differences need to be accounted for when developing strategies and instruments to help protect people from the impacts of such disasters. For this reason, the Pacific Insurance and Climate Adaptation Programme has created a policy brief outlining the differences between women and men in terms of education, employment, income and household relations to help guide stakeholders when designing financial instruments.

This Programme aims to improve the financial preparedness of Pacific households, communities and small businesses for climate change and natural hazards through the development of disaster risk financing instruments, including climate risk insurance. The policy brief thus outlines how men and women’s usage of financial instruments, risk exposure and perceptions, and social networks differ, all of which have a major impact on how people are able to cope after extreme weather events. The policy brief also includes information on how these extreme climatic events can even affect gender-based violence. The Government of Fiji has already made considerable efforts to address these gender differences, as seen in their work on the Fiji National Gender Policy. This policy brief aims to complement these efforts by succinctly summarizing the differences between women’s and men’s experiences, opportunities and other factors that affect people’s preparedness for and resilience to natural hazards.