Gender, Emergencies and Humanitarian Assistance

Report commissioned by the WID desk, European Commission, Directorate General for Development

Authored by: Bridget Byrne and Sally Baden

Categories: Human Rights, Humanitarian Emergencies
Sub-Categories: Human Development, Post-Conflict Reconstruction, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV)
Region: No Region
Year: 1995
Citation: Byrne, Bridget and Sally Baden. Gender, Emergencies and Humanitarian Assistance. Brighton, UK: BRIDGE Institute of Development Studies, 1995.

Access the Resource:

Executive Summary

There is a growing international consensus on the need to consider gender issues in emergencies and humanitarian assistance. Current relief practice, to a large extent, reflects women in development (WID) rather than a gender and development (GAD) approach, focusing on women’s specific needs and their role as mothers. There remains a widespread conception that women and children are the primary victims of emergencies, and yet there is limited analysis of the role of social relations, specifically gender relations, in determining who suffers in emergencies and what options are available to affected individuals and communities. A gender approach is important to identify men and women’s differing vulnerabilities to crises as well as their different capacities and coping strategies. Gender analysis can illuminate the unequal power relations underlying social institutions and the changes in gender relations and identities which occur during crisis and conflict situations.