Gender equality and women’s empowerment in climate change adaptation (CCA) and disaster risk reduction (DRR) – laws, policies and practices in Vietnam

By: B. Vu Ngoc

Publication Title: VietNam journal of Family and Gender studies

Publisher: Hanoi: Institute for Family and Gender Studies VietNamese Academy of Social Sciences

ISSN: 1859-1329


While Viet Nam has been successful in achieving economic growth, poverty reduction and gender equality, the country cannot avoid exposure to a variety of disasters due to climate change, as it is among the most prone regions to disasters in the world. This paper will show that climate change and its impacts are not gender neutral and nor are its policies and actions. Because of prevailing gender inequalities, women are likely to be more affected than men. Sensitivity to climate change varies and is particularly strong amongst poorer, rural women, including those from ethnic minorities, who tend to rely on natural resources and climate-sensitive livelihood activities. Due to their gender-defined roles in society and traditional patterns of marginalization, women are amongst those that are likely to carry the heaviest burdens from these changes and benefit less the policies and programmes that address these, though they play a crucial role in Viet Nam. Not only do they comprise almost half of its population, but they also play important roles at household level, in the rural and urban economies and in society as a whole. The paper also shows that women should not be seen as ‘victims’. They are also crucial actors in climate change adaptation (CCA) and disaster risk reduction (DRR), and their needs and knowledgeshould be used to inform the design, implementation, and monitoring of climate change and
CCA/DRR policies.

Key words: gender, equality, climate change, adaptation, disaster, risk reduction.

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