IDS research on Gender and Development has sought diverse ways to understand and address inequality in gender relations since the late 1970s. With colleagues at Sussex University, IDS has played a prominent part in promoting an approach that put power at the heart of Gender and Development analysis.
IDS work in the 1990s turned a feminist lens on attempts to institutionalise gender through 'mainstreaming' and brought new perspectives to debates on gender in relation to land, labour, health, environment and participatory development. In 1992, BRIDGE, a gender research and communications programme was established, aimed at providing accessible and diverse information to bridge the gaps between theory, policy and practice.
With the renewed focus on women's rights and empowerment, IDS continues to contribute to feminist debates through its research and communications work. Researchers in all IDS teams focus on gender issues and contribute to a cross-institute Gender Working Group. Recently, a new Research Partnership Consortium (RPC) on Pathways of Women's Empowerment, with partners in South Asia, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East, has been launched, giving IDS' work on gender further impetus.
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