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Gender equality targeting in adaptation finance

Briefing/policy papers

Written by Laetitia Pettinotti, Yue Cao, Tony Mwenda Kamninga

Image credit:Curt Carnemark / World Bank Image license:CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 DEED

When addressing and recovering from climate impacts, women and girls face enhanced vulnerabilities compared to men and boys of the same communities. Supporting greater gender equality increases the adaptive capacity of women, as highlighted since 2007 in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report on vulnerability.

No gender equality-specific target exists in adaptation finance or climate finance, but the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s Parties have committed to ‘increase the gender-responsiveness of climate finance’.

We find that in 2021, out of a total of $28 billion in adaptation funding by developed countries, providers reported that $12.2 billion also had gender equality as an objective. However, $11.2 billion (40%) of adaptation finance is not screened for gender equality targeting when reported, which leaves great uncertainty over precisely how much adaptation finance also targets gender equality.

Multilateral – and some bilateral - providers of adaptation finance need to improve their gender equality tracking in adaptation finance flows. This matters for accountability as discussions on the next climate finance goal pick up speed: if we don’t have transparency on what finance is supporting how are we to hold providers accountable?