Recommendations to the United Nations
Gender Working Group, 1995
The United Nations should be required to review its current corporate policy to ensure that gender, science and technology is formally incorporated into policy. As a means to successful implementation of such policy, gender, science and technology specialists within each agency should be required to prepare case studies and training materials. Monitoring and evaluating and statistical divisions within each agency should establish a process for systematic collection of gender-disaggregated data. Agencies should collaborate to ensure common methods. Progress should be assessed on an ongoing basis. A relevant specialized agency should be requested to assist UN agencies in this task, with the UNCSTD Secretariat responsible for overseeing initiation
and monitoring progress. Policies to be reviewed and action taken on implementation by September 1996
United Nations agencies should actively respond to policies calling for recruitment of professional women by establishing clear targets and timelines for recruitment of women into high-level professional posts with strategic importance for science and technology. There should be explicit pro-active recruitment, retention, and re-entry programs with supporting policies for high-level professional women in science and technology. Agencies should be required to report regularly to their governing bodies on the progress achieved and specific constraints encountered. Agencies should review some early successful experiences, such as that of CGIAR and WHO, in this regard. Progress to be reported through the UNCSTD Secretariat by September 1996.
United Nations agencies should use accessible and practical guidelines for incorporating gender analysis and assessment into the design of science and technology policies, programs, and projects. Although each agency has a distinct mandate and programming approach and guidelines will have to be specific to individual agencies, a set of general guidelines that could be adapted to specific circumstances could be useful. The guidelines developed by UNIFEM could be built upon for this purpose. Specific guidelines in place by September 1996 with briefing to relevant staff on implementation of policies. Progress to be reported annually through the UNCSTD Secretariat.
The United Nations should establish procedures to reassert, document, monitor, and evaluate the gender impact of their science and technology programs, including regular reporting of results and lessons learned to its various governing councils. Experience of such agencies as ILO, UNIDO, and UNIFEM, could be built upon to develop general guidelines for adaptation by other policies. Gender, science and technology specialists in each agency should work together with monitoring and evaluation units to implement this process. Specific guidelines in place by September 1996 with evidence of incorporation in at least one project document. Progress to be reported regularly
through the UNCSTD Secretariat.
The United Nations should give full support to strengthening and sustaining informal methods of interagency networking on gender, science and technology issues. The CSTD should interact with this network in an on-going way to ensure gender perspective and mutual support in achieving goals. The United Nations should investigate alternative methods of increasing intra- and interagency communication in this area by, for example, establishing an electronic network link on
gender, science and technology. This could be linked to existing NGO networks. UNIFEM and UNIDO to facilitate this process in conjunction with the UNCSTD Secretariat.
UN agencies, particularly those reviewed by the CSTD Working Group as having functions at the interface of science and technology, should incorporate "gender and science and technology" analysis into all regular programs, and through redistribution of agency funding priorities, provide increased regular budgetary allocations to gender units. Technically based agencies should support adequate staffing of gender experts and require training of all staff in gender analysis to ensure full incorporation of gender into their regular programs. Progress to be reported through the UNCSTD Secretariat by September 1996.
The United Nations should recognize the value of collaboration with NGOs and expand its formal partnership with and support for these organizations both at the level of implementing field projects and also obtaining policy advice and assistance with the design, implementation and evaluation of gender-sensitive technical cooperation programs. Partnership with the over 650 NGOs active in gender, science and technology should be forged. Models such as those being developed by UNHCR could be explored and approaches suitable for each agency identified.
Ongoing UN support for the NGO gender, science and technology network, Once and Future Action Network, would assist in this process. Relevant UN staff focal point for gender and science and technology should be supported to participate in the on-going activities of the NGO consortium.
Agencies to explore options and begin to implement plans to enhance cooperation and support to NGOs by September 1996. Progress to be reported through the UNCSTD Secretariat. Up to 10 of the most relevant agencies should be active participants in the NGO consortium by September
The GWG recommends that establishment of an Advisory Board on Gender to the UNCSTD for 4 years to ensure that gender issues are adequately addressed in all future deliberations of UNCSTD. The advisory board should consist of seven international gender experts, appointed by the Secretary General. Among its initial responsibilities will be the task of monitoring implementation of the above recommendations. The UNCSTD Secretariat is to support the Advisory Board in its activities.