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Lectures and Seminars – Sheila Quinn
The Budget as an Instrument for (Gender) Equality
The lecture will begin with an overview of the Budget in relation to its legal framework, its organisation, its function and including an overview of these dimensions as they pertain to the participating countries.
It will go on to examine the increase in budget initiatives focused on social justice and that seek to promote increased budget transparency and accountability, including participatory budgeting, costing exercises and, in particular, gender responsive budgeting. This topic will also present the international legal mandate for the use of the budget as an instrument for (gender) equality as articulated in, for example, the BPfA, and in national laws. Finally the topic will give an overview of the uptake of gender responsive budgeting by intergovernmental agencies, donors and national governments – all of which demonstrate the move toward using the budget as a legitimate instrument in the work toward (gender) equality.
Government Legislative and Policy Response to Gender Inequality
The lecture will begin with an overview of the evolution of policy and legislative response to gender inequality from a development and human rights perspective. It will continue with an examination of how we arrived at gender mainstreaming as the globally accepted strategy to advance gender equality. What is gender mainstreaming and what has progress been since its inception following the 4th World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995.
The Tools of GRB
This lecture will be an introduction to the major tools of gender responsive budgeting, beginning with a presentation of the two main approaches to gender responsive budgeting within a mainstreaming framework.
Quinn has identified two broad approaches to the work of gender responsive budgeting as exemplified by two important country examples. In Belgium and Austria, legislation has been introduced to establish gender responsive budgeting as an integral part of the administrative processes of budget-making and as a way of implementing gender budgeting. An examination of the methodologies adopted in both countries indicates two different approaches. One is to identify gender equality objectives for each government sector; the other is to examine each budgetary activity for its potential to impact on gender equality and to enhance the capacity of each budgetary activity to realize improved gender equality outcomes.
The lecture will go on to look at the following:
The Commonwealth Secretariat Tools
Developed in 1999 by Professor Diane Elson, these tools, some of which are adapted from conventional budget assessment and impact appraisal tools, have been widely used in much gender responsive budget work around the world. The tools are:
1. Gender-Disaggregated Beneficiary Assessment of Public Service Delivery and Budget Pirorities
2. Gender-Disaggregated Public Expenditure Benefit Incidence Analysis
3. Gender-Aware Policy Evaluation of Public Expenditure by Sector
4. Gender-Aware Budget (expenditure) Statement
5. Gender Disaggregated Analysis of Impact of Budget on Time Use
6. Gender-Aware Medium-Term Macroeconomic Policy Framework
Finally the lecture will give a brief overview of the following:
• The 5 Step Approach developed in South Africa
• The 3-Division of Expenditure for Equality developed in Australia
• The 6-Step Approach identified by Quinn in the handbook prepared for the Council of Europe in 2009
Gender responsive Budgeting and Performance Based Budgeting (PBB)
The Lecture will begin by looking at the trend in the budget process away from a focus on inputs and outputs, to a focus on performance and outcomes. Budget reform processes in many countries have brought the focus, to one degree or another, on planning budget to achieve programme outcomes and measuring budget performance to assess the achievement of those outcomes. Gender responsive budgeting has gender equality as its focused outcome and relies measuring the impact on women and men as a measure of budget and policy performance.
The lecture will continue by looking in depth at the reforms in Austira.
New legislation and a constitutional amendment in 2007 in Austria paved the way for a comprehensive reform of the budgetary process with the move toward performance based budgeting by 2013. The entire management processes and budget cycle, including the medium term strategy as well as the annual budget, the formulation, execution and control of the budget, is affected. Among the four strategic outcomes specified in the constitution is that of gender equality; the others are transparency, efficiency and a true and fair view of the financial position of the federal government of Austria. The Austrian administration views the constitutionally defined objective of gender quality as corresponding to the internationally established concept of gender budgeting or gender-equitable budgeting.
Tooling up for GRB
This seminar will examine the tools in more detail with specific examples from Europe and also from other country examples.
Gender responsive budgeting at different levels of government
Political decisions on broad macroeconomic issues constitute the first and highest level of budget making. After that decisions are made about the level of funding allocated to each line ministry, or, in the case of programme budgeting, to each budget programme. Subsequently, budget decisions are made all the way along the spending line until budget allocations are translated into public goods and services. There are opportunities to promote gender equality at each of these points.
We will look at examples of different exercises at the following levels:
• Central Government Level
• Sectoral/departmental Level
• Regional/Local Government Level
• Programme Level
Prerequisites for GRB and Prerequisites for Teaching GRB
This seminar will review the environment that needs to be in place in order to carry out gender responsive budgeting, including:
• Acknowledgement of gender equality obligations under international human rights law, national gender equality and other related laws, and as per agreements with partners and donors
• Understanding gender
• Recognising gender inequality
• Political commitment
• Bureaucratic Commitment
• Interdepartmental gender equality machinery
• Engaging with civil society
• Gathering and managing gender relevant statistics
During this session we will explore how to work with civil servants as they examine the opportunities and challenges that exist in the work environment in relation to adopting a gender responsive budgeting approach to their work.
We will also explore the basics of how to train others how to introduce, promote, and implement GRB, including:
• Understanding how GRB has been defined
• How to contextualise GRB in terms of its genesis, its rationale, and legal and policy framework for GRB
• How to present GRB a legitimate way to advance equality and to thus counter the perception that it is simply the new fad
• How to identify entry points and pilot projects.
• The importance of the role of civil society and how to encourage their participation in and their advocacy for GRB exercises