There has been significant progress in gender equality globally over recent decades, such as in school enrolment or in labour force participation rates, and in certain groups of men’s and boys’ attitudes to gender equality; particularly among younger, educated males in urban areas. Yet, historically embedded structural barriers and patriarchal relations seem to counter progress in other areas – such as unpaid care work, or women’s access to property and productive resources.
In the context of rising global and local economic inequalities, we have also seen the emergence of ‘backlash’ against women’s empowerment in many settings. This is relevant in many countries undergoing transitions where the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development operates. This report aims to explore experiences of men and constructions of masculinity in four significant transition countries – Egypt, Kazakhstan, Turkey and Ukraine – to consider how best to complement the Bank’s women-focused interventions in its projects and investments, within its mandate to enhance both the resilience of transitions and equality of opportunity.