What Gender Reveals: Unexpected Gender Findings in International Evaluation

Session Number: 1487
Track: Presidential Strand
Session Type: Panel
Tags: child labor, clean cookstoves, gender analysis, Gender-based violence, Local government, public health
Session Chair: Kirsten Zeiter [Senior Program Officer for Gender, Monitoring and Evaluation - National Democratic Institute (NDI)]
Presenter 1: Tushi Baul, Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist [Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist - University of Notre Dame]
Presenter 2: Lila K Khatiwada, Khati [Sr. Research Associate - Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development (NDIGD)]
Presenter 3: Danice Brown Guzmán [Research Associate - Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development]
Presenter 4: Paul Perrin [Director of Monitoring and Evaluation (Initiative for Global Development) - University of Notre Dame]
First Author or Discussion Group Leader: Tushi Baul, Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist [Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist - University of Notre Dame]
Second Author or Discussion Group Leader: Danice Brown Guzmán [Research Associate - Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development]
Third Author or Discussion Group Leader: Paul Perrin [Director of Monitoring and Evaluation (Initiative for Global Development) - University of Notre Dame]
Fourth Author or Discussion Group Leader: Lila K Khatiwada, Khati [Sr. Research Associate - Notre Dame Initiative for Global Development (NDIGD)]
Time: Nov 14, 2019 (02:45 PM - 03:30 PM)
Room: CC 200DE

Abstract 1 Title: Perceptions of Local Leaders: Evidence from a photo experiment in Malawi
Presentation Abstract 1:

Researchers ran a photo experiment in Malawi with Village Development Committee members to understand opinions about these members.  Respondents were randomly exposed to one of four photographs of either a male or female VDC members. Each subject randomly received one photo to evaluate along ten dimensions related to professionalism. Key experimental comparisons are between each VDC member’s photo with or without the uniform. Our primary outcome variables capture nine separate dimensions of professionalism. We see significant male-uniform effects for subjects who received the uniform treatment. All uniform coefficients for the male committee members were positive and significant at the .01 level. The results suggest that male VDC members benefit from wearing an official VDC uniform, as respondents were more likely to positively evaluate uniform wearing members than non-uniform wearing members. This further implies that female VDC members did not benefit from the image boost of wearing a uniform.


Abstract 2 Title: Food Security and Domestic Violence: Evidence from Clean Cookstoves experiment in Uganda
Presentation Abstract 2:

Our work examines the effects of improved cookstoves in reducing domestic violence in Uganda. The program offered improved cookstoves to randomly selected villages in northern Uganda.  The cookstoves project aimed at reducing the biomass used for cooking and improved the quality of air breathed during cooking so to improve the health of mothers and children. As an unintended consequence of cookstoves project, we found reduced level of gender violence in the households that received improved cookstoves. In some traditionally patriarchal cultures, nonperformance or poor performance of household duties has been identified as a justification of violence towards women. Similarly, qualitative studies have found that women may reduce their own intake of food to provide enough for their family, in order to avoid experiencing violence. This use of the cookstoves provides some novel and experimental evidence on the pathway between traditional patriarchal gender norms on food preparation and domestic violence.


Abstract 3 Title: Gender related Findings on Preferences on Education: Evidence from a survey experiment in Nepal
Presentation Abstract 3:

Within the context of the evaluation of a child labor behavior change intervention in Nepal, we implemented a survey experiment to understand whether household members perceive the benefits of schooling differently for boys and girls. We ask the household representative to think of a fifteen year old boy who has finished fifth grade, and what advantages this boy has compared to one of the same age who never attended primary school. Then the same question was asked about a fifteen year old girl. The order of the questions was randomly assigned. We consider the first response to be independent, as no reference point exists, whereas the second can be interpreted as relative to the gender which the respondent considered in the previous question. We find differences in response rates for the benefits to education for girls relative to boys, and we find that female respondents drive this difference.


Abstract 4 Title: “We Have Learned to Dream, and Will Continue to Dream”: The Importance of Gender Role Transformation in Addressing Chagas Disease in Bolivia
Presentation Abstract 4:

An evaluation of a program implemented by MAP International in Cochabamba State, Bolivia seeking to address Chagas Disease was initially framed to focus on the biomedical aspects of Chagas care and treatment. However, the evaluation revealed that one of the most transformative changes facilitated by the project was in the increased community leadership of women’s groups in addressing “personal, family and community issues that have been kept in silence or secret for generations.” The evaluation team found evidence of independent, grassroots group mobilization on issues of community and household importance beyond the original goal of Chagas education and prevention. Participation in women’s group activities has provided a level of confidence that many women could not have imagined under former paradigms. The positive benefits on households and communities due to women’s group activity has spread infectiously to other communities, which have proactively reached out to program implementers to support self-organization.


Audience Level: All Audiences

Session Abstract (150 words): 

This session will present findings related to gender from international evaluations across sectors and geographic contexts. In some cases, these findings appeared unexpectedly in the analysis phase; in others, a gender analysis planned from the start resulted in important and surprising implications. What all of these evaluations have in common is that the way in which gender manifested in the findings - whether in magnitude, direction, or scope – was, to a certain extent, not what the evaluators expected. Evaluations from Bolivia, Uganda, Malawi and Nepal will be presented as case studies which explore the implications of and provide valuable techniques for integrating gender into evaluation design, methods, and analysis. This session aims to demonstrate the valuable and varied role gender can play at different phases of the evaluation cycle, and why it’s important to plan for a gender analysis in every evaluation - even when you might not expect it.