Gender mainstreaming in the EU. Principles and practice

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Publication Date 2001
ISBN 0-7494-3624-7
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Book abstract:

Sonia Mazey's book is part of the Kogan Page Dossier Series which presents concise and accessible analysis of EU policies, institutions and related themes. This volume focuses on the EU equality strategy adopted in 1996 of gender mainstreaming with the key objective of achieving equality between men and women by integrating a gender perspective into all public policies, thus recognising the different needs of men and women. The book is divided into three parts. Part one clarifies the concept of gender mainstreaming and outlines the theoretical arguments for adopting such an approach and its implications on policy making. The emergence of gender mainstreaming in the European Union is examined in part two with the history of EU equality policies from their origins in the 1970s right up to the Nice Treaty and the Draft Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union which reiterates the Union's commitment to gender equality. Part three examines the impact that the principle of gender mainstreaming has had on policy-making procedures and outcomes. There is specific focus on the challenges it has presented for the European Commission and the need to increase the participation of women in EU decision making. The conclusion discusses whether gender mainstreaming will actually make a difference, plagued as it is by a misunderstanding of what it actually is by policy makers within the EU and the Member States and the common belief that increasing women's representation at senior levels of decision making may lead to a lowering of standards. This book provides a concise but useful overview of gender issues in the EU and will be a valuable source for both students and academics as well as policy makers in the private sector. Sonia Mazey is a Faculty Lecturer in the Department of Politics and International relations at the University of Oxford and Tutorial Fellow in Politics at Hertford College.

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