Implementationof gender budgeting globally:Globally, genderbudgeting has been recognized as a key initiative to address gender inequalityacross countries. One of the SGDs (Sustainable Development Goals), a collectionof 17 goals set by UN as an agenda for development by 2030, is achieving ‘genderequality’. Considering a few examples of countries and regions that havesuccessfully implemented gender budgeting programs can help us in learning howsimilar programs can be executed in India, especially in the smart citiescontext: Genderbudgeting by country:DevelopedCountries:Belgium:Belgium’s foray into gender budgeting began when it held a conference in 2001titled “Strengthening economic andfinancial governance: toward gender responsive budgeting”.
This conferencegave rise to a number of gender budget initiatives across the European Union.Following this, Belgium launched a pilot study to explore the feasibility ofgender budgeting within all government services and activities. This study paved the wayfor legislation which mandated gender budgeting responsibilities. The followingprovisions under the law were implemented: ¨ GenderNote:This requires the government to quantify budgetary allocations of each ministryto the attainment of gender equality objectives specified at the beginning ofthe government’s term. ¨ GenderTest:The government is also required to measure the differential gender-wise impactof all legislative programs.Australia:Australia pioneered gender budgeting by introducing it at a national level in1983-84. The policies were introduced in 3 phases of the government. A genderbudgeting framework was created which was then extended to states and territorygovernments.
A women’s budget statement was also created which was responsiblefor assessing the sex-disaggregated budgetary impacts.Government conductedgender budgeting activities through an analytical framework to classify publicexpenditure into the following categories:Category 1: Programs thatspecifically targeted womenCategory2:Programs that promote equal representation of women and men Category3:Mainstream programs with components where gender might be relevant Emerging MarketsAlbania: Albania followed the model adoptedoriginally by Austria and created a legal basis for gender responsive budgetingas a part of its comprehensive budget reform process. In 2005, the IntegratedPlanning System was introduced, a framework to ensure that the core policiesdeveloped by the government functioned in an integrated manner. The legal basis provided for a number of actions to be taken in the preparationof the medium-term budget: Identificationof gender equality objectives with targeted outcomes and indicators¨ -Settingof gender equality criteria¨ -Alignmentof gender budgeting with the National Strategy on Gender Equality¨ -Ministerialresponsibilities for implementation¨ -Strategyto roll out gender budgeting across all line ministries by 2013 Philippines: Gender responsive budget policies started inPhilippines at the national level in 1995 with the introduction of GAD (GenderAnd Development) budget. The GAD budget made a provision of earmarking at least5% of all department spending on programs for women. Since a minimum spendingrequirement led to misallocation of resources, the 5% requirement was latermade flexible so that spending could be streamlined towards effective programsalone.
The GAD budget implementation led to annual budget plans across all governmentdepartments. Philippine Commission on Women was created in 1995 as well tomonitor compliance of ongoing gender budgeting efforts. This program also ledto an improvement in sex-disaggregated data collection and reporting. Learnings from the globally implemented gender budgetingprograms:Ø Legal basis: Mostcountries with gender budgeting programs have a legal basis. This has helped inimplementation and accountability of the programs. Ø Analysis across the budget cycle: Most countries follow a system of ex anteand ex post gender impact assessments. A forecast based as well as a resultsbased approach indicates the continuous assessment of impact across the entirebudget cycle. Ø Broad application: Genderbudgeting is applied in a variety of budgetary proposals and expenditureplanning.
Most countries categorize their expenditures and this helps inplanning their spending accordingly. Ø Coordinated approach: Countriesthat have successfully implemented gender budgeting in their policies andprograms have achieved a high degree of coordination across various govt.departments at all levels (Centre, State and Regional). Gender Budgeting inSmart City Mission Followingare the few areas where gender budgeting can be implemented in the Smart CityMission: ¨ Job creation: With thedevelopment of smart cities, the area earmarked for development is bound tohave an impact on the livelihood of the local villagers and the neighbouringcommunities. Smart City Mission can focus on creating caretaking jobs inhospitals, municipality and training the women in modern technological skillsin various fields. The job creation can also focus on the migrant women fromthe deprived sections of society and enable them to form women co-operativesocieties and self-help groups that are already a success in the ruralIndia. ¨ Developing self-sufficiency: Women associatedunder MUDRA scheme should be given special considerations and ways to integratetheir ventures with the Smart City Mission can be gauged. Training facilitiesfor making their ventures efficient and integration of the same in the grandscheme needs to be considered.
It needs to be ensured that there is one stop guidancecentre for start-ups where the knowledge transfer regarding, licensing,financing, advertising, marketing, branding, standardization etc. takes place.Job oriented training and counselling units can be set up to further developskill of women. Special economic zones can be created with facilities likehealthcare, sanitation and childcare for women entrepreneurs. Dedicatedmarketplace or haats for sale of products manufactured by women should also beconsidered. ¨ Exposure to IT and ICT Since InformationControl Technology will be an integral concept in the smart cities, it isimperative that women should be given exposure to the Information Technology. Forthis, training facilities can be set up to provide digital literacy.
Basic computertraining for women of all ages (adolescents, middle-aged women and older women)should be the first step towards the proper implementation of this plan. Trainingregarding the use of e-commerce can be given. Complaint and grievance redressalthrough IT can be utilized.
Basic exposure to ICT need to be slowly integratedin their day to day lives so that the transition becomes smoother. ¨ Involvement in Decision Making: Decision-making isone of the key aspects where women need to be involved. The self-help grouprepresentative, Slum Committee group representatives, senior citizenrepresentatives and other women group representative need to be identified andinvolved in the decision processes. Municipalities andcivic bodies are some of the areas that could really benefit from theinvolvement of women. Technology, engineering, mathematics field and scientificresearch are other few areas where the representation of women needs to befactored in the decision-making roles of their respective stem bodies.
Policy-makingand city planning are the areas where the equal representations of womencouncillors need to be achieved to reduce the gender gap. As a starting point, SmartCity mission has its own review committees where the representation of womencandidates will enable the trickle-down effect of involvement of women indecision-making policies that will get followed. ¨ Infrastructure development: Infrastructureshould be developed keeping in mind the needs of women. A starting point forthis could be development of waste management system capable of handlingmedical waste and disposal of sanitary napkins. Also for the overalldevelopment of girls there should be construction of sports ground andfacilities especially for girls and women. To reduce the stress and to keepthem mentally fit there should be rejuvenation centres made for girls and womenof all ages.
¨ Construction of houses: Thisis another area where gender budgeting can be incorporated in smart citymission. Keeping in mind the needs and safety of women, there should be housesmade available to single women, working women et.c. at reasonable prices. Apartfrom regular housing there can be a system of short stay homes that can bededicated to provide shelter for women in need. Also such homes could also bedeveloped at areas such as railway stations. This would help reduce the crimerates towards women.
Property dealers should be given incentives for providingaffordable houses to single woman.¨ Grievance handling system: Thereshould be a 24*7 grievance handling team dedicated to issues registered bywomen. Also the performance of this team should be regularly monitored so as toensure its efficiency. ¨ Women Safety: Acity cannot be smart unless its women are safe. Several steps need to be taken inthis direction. There should be special training of police personals onhandling of women related issues.
Also there should be fast track courtsdedicated for women. There could also be development of women only cab serviceswith women drivers. Cases of female foeticide and infanticide should be broughtto notice and dealt with severely.Thereshould be installation of proper street lights as well as cctv cameras on allroads. Apart from this women safety apps such as Safetipin should be developed andsuch apps should be incorporate with local police.