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Gender-responsive and age-sensitive social protection

Gender and age play a disproportionately large role in how people experience risks, vulnerabilities, and opportunities. Entrenched gender inequalities and norms drive differences in women and men’s lives and their well-being. Events at different stages in life, like marriage, childbearing or retirement, also produce distinct risks and vulnerabilities for women and girls. The intersection of gender inequalities and norms with ages and stages in the life course mean women and girls are at a heightened risk of poverty.

Social protection, such as cash transfers or health insurance, can help address poverty and vulnerability, as well as supporting people during shocks from childhood through to old age. Despite the benefits of social protection systems, many fail to address gender- and life course-related vulnerabilities and inequalities, limiting its potential for poverty reduction.

To understand how these vulnerabilities and inequalities can be prevented and addressed, UNICEF Office of Research—Innocenti has begun a new four-year research programme called Gender-Responsive and Age-Sensitive Social Protection (GRASSP), generously funded by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) and other partners. The research programme will examine how gender-responsive and age-sensitive social protection can sustainably reduce poverty and achieve gender equality.

Find out more about GRASSP

Gender-responsive and age-sensitive social protection

Gender and age play a disproportionately large role in how people experience risks, vulnerabilities, and opportunities. Entrenched gender inequalities and norms drive differences in women and men’s lives and their well-being. Events at different stages in life, like marriage, childbearing or retirement, also produce distinct risks and vulnerabilities for women and girls. The intersection of gender inequalities and norms with ages and stages in the life course mean women and girls are at a heightened risk of poverty.

Social protection, such as cash transfers or health insurance, can help address poverty and vulnerability, as well as supporting people during shocks from childhood through to old age. Despite the benefits of social protection systems, many fail to address gender- and life course-related vulnerabilities and inequalities, limiting its potential for poverty reduction.

To understand how these vulnerabilities and inequalities can be prevented and addressed, UNICEF Office of Research—Innocenti has begun a new four-year research programme called Gender-Responsive and Age-Sensitive Social Protection (GRASSP), generously funded by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) and other partners. The research programme will examine how gender-responsive and age-sensitive social protection can sustainably reduce poverty and achieve gender equality.

LATEST INNOCENTI PUBLICATIONS

GRASSP Think Piece Series

Think Pieces

2020     12 Feb 2020
The UNICEF’s Office of Research—Innocenti is pleased to launch this think piece series on gender-responsive age-sensitive social protection in low- and middle-income countries. This series seeks to stimulate thinking and dialogue, and push boundaries on how academics, national governments, and the international community as a whole can improve and strengthen social protection systems to achieve the sustainable development goals, such as poverty eradication, whilst contributing to gender equality.

AUTHOR(S)

Ana Maria Buller; Amber Peterman; Meghna Ranganathan; Alexandra Bleile; Melissa Hidrobo; Lori Heise

Intimate partner violence (IPV) is widespread globally, with an estimated one-third of women aged 15 years and over experiencing physical and/or sexual violence at the hands of an intimate partner during their lifetimes. Economic empowerment, or the financial standing of women, is often thought to protect against IPV, signalling sufficient economic autonomy to leave abusive situations or to prevent abuse. Asset ownership is one measure of economic empowerment, and can convey substantial agency as a wealth store, especially for large productive assets, such as agricultural land or home ownership. Despite the important implications of IPV reduction for policy and programming, evidence of this relationship is scarce.We hope this research will advance our global understanding of this potential.

AUTHOR(S)

Audrey Pereira; Amber Peterman; Kathryn Yount

A first roundtable to explore the issues regarding care work and children was hosted in Florence by the UNICEF Office of Research – Innocenti from 6 to 7 December 2016. Unpaid care and domestic work have often been neglected in both research and policymaking, being viewed as lying within the domestic sphere of decisions and responsibilities, rather than as a public issue. However, over recent decades, researchers across a range of disciplines have strived to fill the evidence, data and research gaps by exploring the unpaid care and domestic work provided particularly by women within the household, and uncovering the entrenched social and gender norms and inequalities.

AUTHOR(S)

Prerna Banati; Elena Camilletti; Sarah Cook

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