Gender into Urban Climate Change Initiative

Just as the linkages between climate change and gender are receiving a growing amount of attention, the specific challenges that cities face in light of climate change are also increasingly recognised. Yet, climate change, gender and cities are rarely addressed together, despite the clear potential for tackling inequality and climate issues with well-designed urban policies.

Together with UN Habitat and the GIZ (German Development Agency), GenderCC recently published one of the most comprehensive publications addressing this interface, which can be downloaded here.

Building upon this initial research, GenderCC launched a new project in collaboration with several partner organisations which will run from 2015-2018. The results of the "Gender into Urban Climate Change Initiative" will be featured on this page.

International project meeting 2017, Yogya

In April the second international meeting took place for which all members of the project team met in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. The meeting aimed at sharing experiences made when conducting the interviews with local stakeholders and reaching out to the cities’ administration. It became apparent that even though many cities already developed climate change programmes and strategies, the implementation is largely lacking behind. Gender has so far not systematically been taken into account in any of the pilot cities’ climate policy, although some of them have gender equality departments. After the interviews, most pilot cities’ administrations expressed their interest towards integrating gender in their climate-related activities and were interested in receiving recommendations. The meeting was also used to jointly develop ideas for local projects and campaigns that can be used as show cases of gender just-climate action in the cities. The international meetings play a crucial role in the project as they offer space for the peer-review of the national work, mutual exchange and for transnational learning experiences. After two international meetings the mutual trust between all partners could be greatly enhanced. The meeting ended with a visit together with YAKKUM Emergency Unit to the mountainous region of central Java to learn about community-based water management and aquaculture activities organised by women’s groups. The trip was a great experience for exchanging gender-just solutions between rural and urban areas.

Gender into urban climate change intiative - international meeting 2017, Yogya


GUCCI kick-off meeting in India

From 16-17th January 2017, a national inception workshop was held in Delhi, India. The meeting hosted by GenderCC's project partner All India Women's Conference (AIWC) aimed to kick-off activities under the GUCCI project in India and to introduce the project to local stakeholders.

The first day of the workshop inlcuded introductory talks by President Veena Kohli of AIWC and Gotelind Alber from GenderCC. Furthermore, the status-quo reports on climate change challenges and policies in India's two pilot cities for the GUCCI project, Delhi and Mumbai, were introduced and discussed. The second day was dedicated to the GAMMA methodology (Gender Assessment and Monitoring of Mitigation and Adaptation) applied in the GUCCI project. In the coming months, AIWC will finalise the status quo reports, conduct interviews applying the GAMMA methodology and host a capacity building workshop for their members and local stakeholders mid-February.

GUCCI - All India Women's Conference 2017


Gender into Urban Climate Change Initiative @ COP22

At COP22 in Marrakech, Morroco, GenderCC - Women for Climate Justice presented the recent findings of the Gender into Urban Climate Change Initiative, hosting a side event in the Green Zone (the civil society space).

"Is your city's climate policy gender proof?"
Monday 14 November, Green Zone

During this workshop we shared experiences about the gender dimensions of local climate policy, with the aim to raise awareness and build capacity of non-governmental organisations, research organisations, and local civil society groups on gender in climate policy in cities. Speakers were Gotelind Alber and Patricia Bohland from GenderCC, Ndivile Mokoene from GenderCC Southern Africa, and Kalyani Raj from All India Women's Conference.

A panel consisting of several representatives from environmental and development NGOs discussed opportunities to cooperate for a better integration of gender issues in urban policies and activities. It became clear that the relevance of gender is not questioned but that resources are often lacking when gender is not at the focus of activities.

Gender Day
Tuesday 15 November, Blue Zone

On Gender Day, GenderCC co-hosted an event with the UNFCCC Secretariat and other organisations, which highlighted tools and methods for implementing gender-responsive climate policy.

The official programme, with details of this event, can be found here.

"Is your city's climate policy gender proof?"


Makassar Meeting

From 29 July – August 2, 2016, the national inception workshop was held in Makassar, Indonesia. Hosted by project partners Aksi! for gender, social and ecological justice and Solidaritas Perempuan, the meeting aimed to build a common understanding of the GUCCI project, including the objectives, strategies and expected results, as well as to enhance understanding among participants on urban climate policy from a gender perspective.

Following several days of meetings and trainings, on Day 4 participants, including Gotelind Alber from the GenderCC Secretariat, took part in a field trip to two villages in Makassar, Cambaya and Tallo. Fisherwomen were able to share their experiences of climate change and the challenges they face as residents of an urban coastal area subjected to increasingly extreme and unpredictable weather events. The discussion addressed the need to build resilience and improve access to services such as water and waste collection, along with the importance of gender-sensitive participative processes in local government planning to ensure that the needs of all members of communities are addressed. On the final day, the project team met with the Mayor of Makassar to discuss the city’s climate policies and the plans to conduct a gender assessment and develop recommendations to improve future climate responses. The Mayor was very receptive and expressed his commitment to the project, enthusiastically sharing photos of the meeting on social media.

Gender Into Urban Climate Change Initiative - Makassar Meeting


Johannesburg meeting

What challenges do cities face when it comes to addressing climate change? How do gender dimensions interact with climate challenges to make life more difficult in cities and what can we do about it? What will it take to convince policy makers that providing safe, high quality public transport helps both to lower emissions and improve the quality of life of its citizens, particularly women? These are just some of the questions that were addressed by the participants of the first substantial meeting under the Gender into Urban Climate Change Initiative. The meeting was hosted by GenderCC Southern Africa, one of the key partners in the new project.

It took place against a backdrop of grassroots activity within the grounds of the GreenHouse People's Environmental Centre in Johannesburg, a green space in the middle of the city used by civil society actors to inspire and support efforts to transform urban environments through ecologically sound and just programmes. Participants included representatives of the GenderCC Secretariat, GenderCC Southern Africa and local environmental and women’s organisations involved in the implementation of the project in the two South African pilot cities, Johannesburg and Tshwane. The focus of the two-day programme was identifying the entry points for gender-responsive urban climate policy and strategising around what can be achieved in the course of the project, which will run for three years.

GUCCI side event in the German Pavilion


Gender into Urban Climate Initiative: official launch at COP21

On December 10, in the German Pavilion at COP21, GenderCC officially launched the “Gender into Urban Climate Change Initiative”, a new project which seeks to integrate gender into mitigation and adaptation policies at municipal level.

Urban action on climate change is receiving growing attention, with cities increasingly considered to be key actors for the implementation of climate policy. However, until now gender issues have rarely been addressed in this context. The project will therefore address this gap, working with project partners in several pilot cities in India, South Africa, and one further country to be confirmed. It is part of the International Climate Initiative (IKI), supported by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB).

The side event was opened by Rita Schwarzelühr-Sutter, German Parliamentary State Secretary (BMUB), with an introduction to the project provided by Gotelind Alber (GenderCC). Further inputs were given by Dorah Marema (GenderCC Southern Africa), Kalyani Raj (All India Women’s Conference) and Christina Soentoro (Aksi!, Indonesia).

GUCCI side event in the German Pavilion


International Climate Initiative (IKI)

Since 2008, the International Climate Initiative (IKI) of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) has been financing climate and biodiversity projects in developing and newly industrialising countries, as well as in countries in transition. Based on a decision taken by the German parliament (Bundestag), a sum of at least 120 million euros is available for use by the initiative annually. For the first few years the IKI was financed through the auctioning of emission allowances, but it is now funded from the budget of the BMUB. The IKI is a key element of Germany’s climate financing and the funding commitments in the framework of the Convention on Biological Diversity. The Initiative places clear emphasis on climate change mitigation, adaption to the impacts of climate change and the protection of biological diversity. These efforts provide various co-benefits, particularly the improvement of living conditions in partner countries.

The IKI focuses on four areas: mitigating greenhouse gas emissions, adapting to the impacts of climate change, conserving natural carbon sinks with a focus on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+), as well as conserving biological diversity.

New projects are primarily selected through a two-stage procedure that takes place once a year. Priority is given to activities that support creating an international climate protection architecture, to transparency, and to innovative and transferable solutions that have an impact beyond the individual project. The IKI cooperates closely with partner countries and supports consensus building for a comprehensive international climate agreement and the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Moreover, it is the goal of the IKI to create as many synergies as possible between climate protection and biodiversity conservation.