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Budget Decisions & Economic & Social Rights, Queen’s University, Belfast 14-15 November 2009 Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland

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Presentation on theme: "Budget Decisions & Economic & Social Rights, Queen’s University, Belfast 14-15 November 2009 Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland"— Presentation transcript:

1 Budget Decisions & Economic & Social Rights, Queen’s University, Belfast 14-15 November 2009 Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

2  In a recent statement, Thomas Hammarberg, COE’s Commissioner for Human Rights – “Budget analysis should be seen as a potent instrument in the struggle for human rights.”  Went on to discuss gender budgeting in the European context and noted that human rights budgeting in other areas is still in its infancy in Europe.  “Implementation gap can only be bridged when budget processes and the budgets themselves reflect our vision about human rights for all.” Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

3  Review genesis of GM  Review genesis of GB  Review Status of GM  Review status of GB  Pose questions: ◦ Is GB capable of advancing the GE agenda? Is it as Sharp suggests, “A unique GM tool”? ◦ Is GM capable of reform? Is it itself in need of reform? ◦ Does GB belong with GM or with Budget Work? Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

4  1995 Platform for Action of the 4 th World Conference on Women in Beijing  Adopted by EU in 1996 and defined: “Gender mainstreaming involves not restricting efforts to promote equality to the implementation of specific measures to help women, but mobilising all general policies and measures specifically for the purpose of achieving equality by actively and openly taking into account at the planning stage their possible effects on the respective situation of men and women (gender perspective). This means systematically examining measures and policies and taking into account such possible effects when defining and implementing them.” – The Dual Track approach Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

5  Crucial element to retain the positive action element – targeted programmes for women with ring-fenced funding  While at the same time putting in place a strategy that would go some way to address the systemic issues within an inherently – if unintentionally gender-biased policy-making processes  Dual track approach abandoned or does it operate as 2 parallel, separate strands with no focussed interaction – EWM as an example of good application of dual track app Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

6  Developed in 1998 for the COE by the Group of Specialists on GM, chaired by Mieke Verloo “the (re)organization, improvement, development and evaluation of policy processes, so that a gender equality perspective is incorporated in all policies, at all levels and at all stages by the actors normally involved in policy making” Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

7  This is the one that is most often referenced – used to supplement the EU Commission’s definition  Positions gender equality as an objective  The focus shifts from women as a problem that needs to be sorted to the policy process that needs overhauling  Potentially transformative GM meant to redress the failure of policy processes to take account of gender differentials and to actively counteract the attendant gender bias Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

8 Rees, 2000  Gender mainstreaming addresses “systems and structures themselves – those very institutionalised practices that cause both individual and group disadvantage in the first place”.  Because of this focus on systems, “it has much more potential to have a serious impact on gender equality than other strategies have.” Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

9 “Gender Mainstreaming aims at changing the mainstream, and hence cannot avoid confrontation with the mainstream, especially since it needs the co-operation of the many ‘normal’ actors. The risk of being swept away by the mainstream instead of being able to change it or re-orient it, is a very realistic risk. It is therefore of crucial importance that gender mainstreaming involved articulated goals, transparency, reflection and debate about gender inequality as a problem, about gender equality as a goal.” Verloo Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

10  “for all financial arrangement, the integration of a gender perspective and adequate financing of specific programmes should be guaranteed.”  “systematically review how women benefit from public sector expenditures; adjust budget to ensure equality of access to public sector expenditures, both for enhancing productive capacity and for meeting social needs.” Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

11 “When the Government comes to forming this year’s budget it will do so with the full cognizance of the impact the decisions it makes could have on women. We shall ensure that within the overall economic objectives of the Government the important decisions we make this year on the budget are made with the full knowledge of their impact on Australian women.” Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

12  1984 Australia – “women’s budget”  “women’s budgets” are a mechanism for establishing whether a government’s gender equality commitments translate into budgetary commitments”.  Femocrats within a progressive labour government, working in the women’s policy machinery – dating from the 1970s  Women’s budget statement – 12 years at Federal level  Also within 6 States and 2 territories Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

13  Sharp – “A Unique Gender mainstreaming tool because they linked policies and programs with their budgets.”  The way the Australian women’s policy units had been established facilitated a gender mainstreaming strategy that sought to make the links the Budget – provided a set of institutional arrangements within the state that both initiated and drove the gender budget exercises. Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

14  As Diane Elson points out, ‘’Gender budgeting is about bringing together two sets of knowledge that have usually been kept separate: knowledge of gender inequality and knowledge of public finance and public sector programmes.”  This is the radical nature of the project that is GB  How does a strategy this radical fit with GM, as we have come to know and experience it? Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

15  To strengthen the capacity of governments to incorporate a gender analysis in the planning and evaluation of revenue-raising measures and expenditure allocations at all levels;  To support strategies for women’s participation in economic decision making through their engagement in the budget process;  To improve the mechanisms used by countries to account for action taken on international commitments to gender and development, including the CEDAW; and  To contribute to the achievement of the International Development Targets (IDTs). Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

16  Gender mainstreaming does not always move beyond the rhetoric  GM competes with other strategies – positive actions replaced by GM – this contrary to EC position  With focus on tools and methods and pilots, it seems like a strategy in search of an objective Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

17  Lack of elaboration of GE as a definite objective AND  A need for ongoing dialogues on what GE should be  So far emphasis on the analytical and educational tools and less on consultation and participation  Thus risk of GM becoming a technocratic exercise Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

18 Gender Mainstreaming – an excuse to do nothing - UN has spread responsibility across the system – “creation of an institutional culture that treats gender and women’s rights as ‘soft’ issues, requiring no particular expertise.” - Donovan Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

19  Good idea in principle, in practice – employed instead of, rather than along with, targeted programmes for women – “it has failed to transform an unjust world into one in which men and women share power equally.” – Donovan  Entirely inadequate – no evaluations rated it as a successful strategy for achieving women’s empowerment or gender equality Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

20  “Gender Mainstreaming can only realise its full potential if this strategy knows’, in its each and every initiative, what its objective is: the abolition of gender equality.” – Verloo  To be transformative needs also to empower those outside the policy environment to debate, advocate, lobby, participate in setting the agenda of gender equality. Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

21 You should not feel overwhelmed by the task of gender mainstreaming. While it is true that in- depth gender-based analysis requires a sophisticated level of expertise, this, when required, can be outsourced to experts. For the most part, practical gender mainstreaming is about running through a checklist of questions to ensure you have not overlooked anything. It is about asking the right questions so that you can see where limited resources should best be diverted. Gender mainstreaming is a necessary process for achieving gender equality in the most effective and efficient manner. Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

22  Most recent publication – COE manual  Positions GB within the COE framework i.e. as a function of GB  Not GM within the Ministry of finance  A GM process that implies a transformation of the mainstream – an organisational change process Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

23  Less than 5-years ago, few examples in Europe, most in the global south  Most activity was educational - seminars on the rationale and the basics of why to and how to  Pilot projects focussing on analysis  A recognition that we need to move beyond the analytic level to effect actual budgetary changes Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

24  Legislative footing – Austria (firmly connected to a budgetary reform process), Belgium, Andalusia – represents significant progress notwithstanding the concerns and limitations  At central government level – le Jaune budgetaire, in Belgium the “gender note”  At regional/local government level – Italy, Switzerland – GenderAlp, transnational project Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

25  Women’s Budget Group – UK, Scotland, Wales  BigBudget – Germany  Watchgroup – Gender and Public Finance – Austria  La Plataforma Impacto de Genero Ya – Spain Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

26 ◦ Is GB capable of advancing the GE agenda? Is it as Sharp suggests, “A unique GM tool”? ◦ Is GM capable of reform? Is GM in need of reform itself? ◦ Can GB invigorate, re-orient, revive GM? ◦ Does GB belong with GM or with Budget Work? Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

27 “…gender budgeting is just good budgeting— budgeting that properly accounts for the positive externalities that are derived from improving women’s opportunities for health care, education, and employment. - Stotsky  “…gender budgeting ‘liberates’ gender (and gender mainstreaming) from the ‘soft’ social issues arena and raises it to the level of macroeconomics, which is often thought of as being ‘technical’, ‘value-free’ and ‘gender- neutral’. - Holvoet Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net

28  Gender Mainstreaming isn’t going away  European Gender Budget Network’s caution re linking GB with GM  Resistance to definition  Current Project in Poland - Gender Mainstreaming. How Can We Successfully Use Its Political Potential?” – describing GM as radical  We must gain access to the counting house! Final Thoughts

29  Donovan, Paula, Senior Advisor, Women and Children’s Issues. (2006) A New UN Agency for Women. Office of the UN Special Envoy for AIDS in Africa   Elson, Diane (2002): Gender-responsive budget initiatives: Some key dimensions and practical example. In: Gender budgeting initiatives. Strategies, concepts and experiences. Papers from a high-level international conference, “Strengthening economic and financial governance through gender responsive budgeting”   _________, (2006) Engendering Government Budgets in the Context of Globalisation(s). International Feminist Journal of Politics   Holvoet, Nathalie (2006) Gender budgeting: Its usefulness in programme-based approaches to aid. EC Gender Helpdesk.   Junta de Andalucia. Consejería de Economía y Hacienda. Elaboración: Comisión de Impacto de Género en los Presupuestos (2007): Gender impact evaluationreport from the draft budget for the Autonomous Region of Andalusia for 2008.   Kerr, Joanna (2007) The Second FundHer Report: Financial Sustainability for Women's Movements Worldwide   Madoerin, Mascha (2007): Gender-responsive budgeting initiatives in Switzerland: Work in progress. Editor: Federal Office for Gender Equality, Switzerland. Translation: Thor Erik Maeder, Laos.   McKay, Ailsa and Morag Gillespie. Gender Mainstreaming of ‘Mainstreaming Gender’? A question of Delivering on Gender Equality in the New Scotland.   Quinn, Sheila, (2009) Gender Budgeting: Practical Implementation Handbook. Council of Europe, Strasbourg   Report on gender budgeting. Final report of the Group of Specialists on Gender Budgeting (EG-S-GB). Directorate General of Human Rights, Strasbourg, 2005.   Stotsky Janet G.,(2006) Gender Budgeting, IMF Working Paper Fiscal Affairs Department   Van Beveren, Jacintha, Thera van Osch and Sheila Quinn, (2004) Budgeting for all: Manual for local gender budget initiatives, Vrouwen Alliantie, Utrecht.   Verloo, Mieke The Development Of Gender Mainstreaming as a Political Concept for Europe, Conference on Gender Learning, Leipzig, September 2002   _________, (2005) Displacement and Empowerment: Reflections on the Concept and Practice of the Council of Europe Approach to Gender Mainstreaming and Gender Equality  Sheila Quinn, Consultant & Researcher, Ireland quinnsheila@eircom.net


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