One of the many myths that populate the field of gender and development is one that claims that gender has been so successfully mainstreamed into development policy that there is now little need for women’s projects and programmes, or indeed for women’s policy units.
The job of creating “gender awareness” is done. After all, the argument goes, the major development agencies and the significant donors have all incorporated clear commitments to ensuring that women are adequately taken into account at all stages of development policy. The view that gender awareness has become part of the common sense of development policy is now so widespread that non-governmental organisations (NGOs) report a growing ennui, a “gender fatigue” in metropolitan policy arenas with women’s programmes increasingly being seen as passé.
This article comes from the IDS Bulletin 35.4 (2004) The Chimera of Success