Count Whilst alternative approaches do exist, for example, gendering time contribution to productive activities or household disaggregated income and expenditure surveys, these are restrictively expensive, burdensome to deliver at scale, and often do not address other gendered data collection issues, such as concerns around the gender objectivity of survey respondents.
A New Approach
In response to these challenges, Adam Smith International has developed a set of pioneering guidelines to improve the ability of practitioners to understand and measure the gendered impact of private sector development programmes. They comprise a three-step process that supports existing programmes to: • choose one approach to counting beneficiaries, apply this consistently across all interventions, and recognise the gendered implications of their given approach; • adapt existing standard measurement tools (including surveys, key informant interviews, and focus group discussion methodologies) to collect data designed to unpack intra-household gender dynamics as they relate to income increase; • design and deliver qualitative analysis to add greater nuance to the sex-disaggregated beneficiary data reported at impact level. In using these guidelines, SAMARTH, a Department for International Development funded marketdevelopment programme in Nepal, observed that in cases where households consider themselves to be male-headed, women are actually the primary contributors to vegetable farming, and have greater decision-making authority on how the income is spent. In this case, conventional measurement approaches would tend to count the male head of the household as the beneficiary, whereas the approaches outlined in Adam Smith International’s guidelines more accurately attributed the benefits to women engaged in the household. This is because the measurement tools used enabled SAMARTH to capture more nuanced information about the relative contribution of men and women to the increased income and the benefit derived from it. This has enabled SAMARTH to tell a much richer story of their impact on women and working-aged girls, particularly those in mixed-sex, maleheaded households. Ultimately these guidelines will serve both to prove impact through monitoring and evaluation systems and to improve impact through intelligent, adaptive programme design across our private sector development portfolio.
The Guidelines for Measuring Gendered Impact in Private Sector Development will be launched at the Donor Committee for Enterprise Development’s Global Seminar 2016.
Put simply, gender equality is no longer a nice-to-have it’s a must-have