Mainstreaming Gender in Philippine Institutional Responses to Climate Change

Open Access
Badayos-jover, Mary Barby P.
Graduate Program:
Rural Sociology
Doctor of Philosophy
Document Type:
Date of Defense:
March 02, 2012
Committee Members:
  • Carolyn Elizabeth Sachs, Dissertation Advisor
  • Carolyn Elizabeth Sachs, Committee Chair
  • Ann Rachel Tickamyer, Committee Member
  • Cynthia Clare Hinrichs, Committee Member
  • Nancy A Tuana, Committee Member
  • Petra Tschakert, Committee Member
  • gender mainstreaming
  • climate change
  • adaptation
  • Philippines
Global climate change has become a pressing environmental, social, political and economic problem in highly vulnerable developing countries like the Philippines. A number of socio-political institutions are thus now involved in climate change initiatives in Philippine locales. While these efforts are underway, there is also a parallel growing concern that institutional responses to climate change will reinforce gender inequalities or undermine the gains made towards gender equality. This apprehension is significant in the Philippines since it has long officially subscribed to gender mainstreaming and is ranked high in gender equity indices. The study focused on analyzing the extent to which Philippine institutional climate change efforts integrate gender concerns. Data collection made use of feminist approaches and institutional ethnography to reveal the complex ruling relations that influence practices on the ground. Interviews and focus group discussions were conducted with representatives from international institutions working in the Philippines, national government agencies, local government units, civil society groups and grassroots communities. Study results highlighted that institutional and community representatives acknowledge gender as a cross cutting issue yet associate it mainly with “women’s participation”. Gender mainstreaming has largely remained rhetoric in the face of organizational masculinism. Hence, there is minimal integration of gender concerns in Philippine institutional climate change initiatives, despite specific policy pronouncements and years of bureaucratic gender mainstreaming. These results have implications on gender equity within climate change institutional structures and processes. However, the results also provide entry points for developing gender-sensitive, equitable, efficient and effective on-the-ground climate change initiatives in vulnerable Philippine locales.