Research-into-Action Brief: Gender and Disasters - Considering Children
This brief explores how globally, women often suffer disproportionately higher impacts in disasters than men. In many instances where data is available, more women are shown to die compared to men and those that survive may also experience a decline in sexual and reproductive health, increased gender-based violence, disruption to education or are forced into harmful coping mechanisms such as child marriage or transactional sex. These impacts are more pronounced where the socio-economic gap between the sexes is wider.
These differences are not natural but arise because of inequitable gender norms (the ways in which different societies define what it means to be a man and to be a woman, including division of labour, roles, responsibilities and customs). Many children take on adult roles and responsibilities reflective of these discriminatory gender norms, yet disaster studies infrequently examine gender holistically when it comes to children, typically equating “gender” simplistically with biological sex. Breaking the cycle of gender inequalities requires a more robust consideration of gender in the context of children’s disaster vulnerability and resilience.
The Research-into-Action Brief series provides concise summaries of academic and grey literature on a range of topics for practitioners working in the fields of child-centred risk reduction (CCRR), climate change adaptation (CCA), and school safety.