International Labour Organization
SEAPAT
South-East Asia and the Pacific Multidisciplinary Advisory Team
ILO/SEAPAT's OnLine Gender Learning & Information Module 
Unit 1: A conceptual framework for gender analysis and planning

What is gender analysis?

Gender needs

Exercise: Gender needs assessment
Tool: Identification of needs profile
Tool: Participatory Exercise in Gender Analysis: Needs Assessment


Gender needs

Because the roles of men and women in societies are often different, their needs vary accordingly.

Caroline Moser makes the conceptual distinction between practical and strategic gender needs. She defines these two types of needs as follows:
 
Practical gender needs

(PGNs)

are the needs women identify in their socially accepted roles in society. PGNs do not challenge, although they arise out of, gender divisions of labour and women’s subordinate position in society. PGNs are a response to immediate perceived necessity, identified within a specific context. They are practical in nature and often inadequacies in living conditions such as water provision, health care and employment.
Strategic gender needs

(SGNs)

are the needs women identify because of their subordinate position in society. They vary according to particular contexts, related to gender divisions of labour, power and control, and may include such issues as legal rights, domestic violence, equal wages, and women’s control over their bodies. Meeting SGNs assists women to achieve greater equality and change existing roles, thereby challenging women’s subordinate position.
Is the distinction between practical and strategic gender needs a useful one for development planners? According to Moser, it is important for planners to understand the distinction because frequently, different needs are confused. Clarification helps in identifying more realistic parameters as to what can be accomplished through development planning, as also the limitations of different policy interventions.


The following exercise clarifies differences between types of gender needs that various policy interventions meet. It is a useful planning tool for classifying planning interventions in terms of which types of gender needs they seek to address.

Exercise: Gender needs assessment


The following tool, the Identification of Needs Profile, helps you identify gender-based differences in men and women’s needs. It also helps you classify these needs as either practical or strategic gender needs.

Tool: Identification of needs profile


The following tool is a participatory exercise that may be used when conducting gender analysis with the participation of client communities. It helps assess gender-based differences in needs.

Tool: Participatory Exercise in Gender Analysis: Needs Assessment


Module Homepage


For further information, please contact the South-East Asia and the Pacific Multidisciplinary
Advisory Team (SEAPAT) at Tel: +63.2.815.2354 or Fax: +63.2.812.6143
E-mail: seapat@ilo.org

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