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Gender perspectives: integrating disaster risk reduction into climate change adaptation good practices and lessons learned

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It is a well-known prediction that women in the developing world will suffer the most from the effects of climate change. What needs equal emphasis is the fact that women also represent an immense source of potential and power to combat the increased disaster risks that climate change will bring.This publication seeks to highlight initiatives that have successfully used disaster risk reduction as a tool to adapt to climate change and reduce risk and vulnerabilities in various parts of the world.The good practices selected show how disaster risk reduction can be integrated into climate change adaptation initiatives to reduce people’s vulnerabilities to the impact of climate change and weather-related disasters, paying attention in particular to women’s needs and priorities:

the first section emphasises women’s knowledge and capacity as environmental and natural resource managers. It also highlights the importance of land use and management, and alternative livelihood options in the context of climate change
the second section highlights women’s participation in community decision making processes, showing the importance of building women’s and girls’ capacity in disaster risk reduction, and demonstrating their potential for leadership
the third section briefly showcases some specific tools used to mainstream gender into planning and policy development, to assess vulnerability, and to design adaptive strategies.

Despite the clear connection between climate change, disaster risk reduction, and gender-focused approaches to development, it is asserted that there still needs to be an increased awareness of this important nexus. The authors hope that this publication will help to increase political interest and generate more financial resources to support gender mainstreaming in disaster risk reduction. It is also hoped that this collection of good practices will inspire the replication of initiatives addressing gender issues and climate change adaptation, building resilience to disasters among the world’s most vulnerable communities.