The financial and economic crisis has highlighted that inequalities, especially along the gender lines, are becoming a common feature of our economies, not only in developing countries but also in the rich economies in the global north. On the other hand, a gender sensitive approach is being gradually adopted by an increasing number of governments, both in rich and poor nations, as an alternative solution to the negative impact of fiscal cuts resulting from the crisis. However, much work still needs to be done, in order to make sure that gender inequalities in society are addressed by national governments in their budget plans and policies.
The Gender and Development Programme, based in East Africa, aims at mainstreaming gender in policies and programmes and raising awareness about the importance of gender sensitive budgeting in the government's plans and programmes.
Starting in 2008, the Gender and Development Programme has embarked on a scoping exercise designed to inform a larger regional project on women's economic rights. The project is intended to produce and EAC Regional Strategy and Monitoring and Evaluation Framework to support local and regional efforts on the advancement of women's economic rights. Its aim is to track the commitments that the different national governments have made towards the advancement of women's economic rights and freedoms, to see what achievements have been made and what the gaps are.
The research and advocacy processes that comprise this initiative are being undertaken as a collaborative effort with partners from the five East African countries.
Another component is a separate study of the Vision 2030, a one-year programme whose overall objective was to undertake an analysis of Kenya's Vision 2030 development blueprint from both a gender and equity perspective. The analysis key findings are published in Kenya Vision 2030: An Audit from an Income and Gender Inequalities Perspective
As part of the broader analysis on the process of regional integration in EAst Africa and linked to its programme of work on Inequalities in Africa, SID has recently published Tracking Gender equality Committments in the East African Community. This book is the result of a joint initiative of SID and EASSI (Eastern African Sub Regional Support Initiative for the Advancement of Women) which aimed at developing a regional monitoring and evaluation mechanism for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to ensure that the East African Community is accountable for the gender related committments entered into