Shared Knowledge

Gender and Climate Change

Climate change is an important issue for sustainable mountain development in the HKH region. Although women and men are impacted differently by climate change, women in particular are important elements for sustainable adaptation efforts. Yet, gender dimensions and analysis remain at the margins of discussions and negotiations. Recognising this emerging issue and critical gap, ICIMOD, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and Women Organising for Change in Agriculture and Natural Resource Management (WOCAN), organised a half-day workshop entitled ‘Gender and Climate Change’ on 18 August 2011 in Kathmandu.  The workshop aimed to discuss government initiatives on gender and climate change and to identify ways forward to ensure gender issues are integrated in planning and actions in Nepal. It included three main themes, including Nepal’s National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA), an overview of the linkages between gender and climate change in Nepal, and progress made by the Government on Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation Plus (REDD+). 

The workshop was opened by the Minister of Environment, the Regional Councillor and Country Director of IUCN, and ICIMOD’s Gender and Governance Division Head. There were 51 participants, including policymakers, decision-makers, and gender practitioners from government, NGOs, development agencies, as well as from donor and civil society organisations.  Participants reaffirmed that climate change is a centrally important development issue and that the impacts of climate change are not gender neutral: it impacts men and women differently and also creates opportunities for them in different ways. However, national climate change policy spaces are not always gender sensitive and women often feel excluded from participating in the new institutional set up created for REDD+ and NAPA. Therefore, participants strongly recommended formalising a network of organisations working on Gender and Climate Change in collaboration with  the Ministry of Environment (MOE) with the aim of supporting national actors in fostering and integrating gender and social inclusion issues in climate change initiatives, in developing an agenda to attain a better position in policy negotiations at the regional and global levels, regularly reviewing national and local level programmes from a gender lens,  and making information available to policy makers, decision makers, and practitioners. 

- Manohara Khadka <>
- Ritu Verma <>