Making Gender Financing More Transparent

Authored by: Jamie Holton and Henry Lewis

Categories: Human Rights, The Field of Women, Peace and Security
Sub-Categories: Economic Participation, Human Development, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV)
Region: No Region
Year: 2021
Citation: Holton, Jamie and Henry Lewis. "Making Gender Financing More Transparent." Publish What You Fund. September 2021.

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Executive Summary

There is a global consensus that addressing gender equality and empowering women and girls is a critical step in significantly improving development outcomes. Countries and donors have pledged to increase investments to address gender equality through their commitments to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, particularly Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5: Achieve gender equality and empower women and girls. Since the adoption of the SDGs, further global initiatives have emerged and resources have been mobilized, creating a diverse range of initiatives and funding flows targeting gender equality. As such, tracking gender financing helps to understand progress towards these global gender equality initiatives and the impact of targeted funding. Yet despite commendable efforts, it remains difficult for gender equality stakeholders to trace this funding. If it is unclear who is spending what, where, and to what effect to address gender inequality, we risk only seeing a portion of the picture.

With so much still to be done to eradicate extreme poverty and social inequality, and with the role of women and girls so central to this, we cannot afford to overlook, nor underestimate, the contribution of women and girls everywhere. Meeting the SDG targets will require transparent information, particularly at the country level, in order to direct (or redirect) funding, coordinate, and address the funding gaps, and to hold donors and governments accountable to their gender equality commitments.

This report is the final output of our Gender Financing Project that assesses the transparency of gender financing. Friends of Publish What You Fund and Publish What You Fund previously assessed the availability and quality of gender financial and programmatic information for Kenya, Nepal, and Guatemala. We have since conducted additional research on the availability of humanitarian, philanthropic, and Development Finance Institution (DFI) gender financing. To build on donors and data platforms’ important efforts to make information about international donors’ funded gender equality initiatives more transparent, this report presents common barriers that prevent gender equality stakeholders in all three countries from accessing high quality data. Through consultation with key gender equality donors, data platforms, and gender and data experts, this report offers actionable recommendations for donors and data platforms to address these issues at the global level.