A Gender Observatory for Cambodia

The goal of this project is to support the Cambodian Ministry of Women's Affairs in the creation of a Gender Observatory that will help them monitor and improve the gender policies of the Cambodian government.

True political development has been possible in Cambodia only after the peace agreements and elections in 1993. Since then the country has created a Ministry of Woman's Affairs and has developed a good number of policies for gender equity, touching all aspects of daily life. Each Ministry has developed its own gender mainstreaming policy.

While this rapid policy development is quite positive, the impact of these policies has not yet been been systematically measured or monitored. Some development partners have undertaken some research in specific fields related to gender equity, but there has been no coordination or monitoring. A complete set of indicators that could be used in systematic research have not been defined.

In response to the need to measure the impact of these policies, the Ministry of Woman's Affairs and the local NGO Open Institute (under funding and support form Spanish Cooperation) have started the preparation of a Gender Observatory that will be in charge of ensuring that a complete catalog of indicators is developed, allowing measurement of the level of gender equity mainstreaming and of the impact of the policies in place.

The first steps of the project involves the definition of the structure and resources that the Observatory should have; a historical analysis of gender policy development since 1993; the development of a comprehensive catalog of indicators for existing policies; and a study of all research that has been done or is being done by development partners and NGOs. All this information will allow the clear definition of what research needs to be develop in order to ensure that policies can be effectively monitored.

The preparation of the Observatory pulls from the experience of similar entities in Spain through the work of a program manager, Ms. Mara Vidal, who has several years of experience working at the Women's Institute of the Spanish government. As part of it work, the Observatory will help train ministries and universities on research and on gender equity fundamentals, capacitating them for research on gender.

In three years the Observatory should be fully managed by the Ministry of Woman's Affairs, and working in cooperation with other ministries, universities, development partners and other researchers, helping define and coordinate the research done by all the partners.

Project partners: Open Institute (NGO, Cambodia) and the Ministry of Woman's Affairs of Cambodia
Start/End Date: Jan 2010 to December 2014
Status: Active
Funder: Spanish Agency for International Cooperation for Development (AECID).
URL: http://www.open.org.kh/en