ABSTRACT

A significant “gender mainstreaming” policy revolution was sparked by the 1995 Beijing Platform for Action (BPA), ratified by member states at the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women. The platform clearly articulated the need for “gender mainstreaming” across all policy areas at all levels of governance. It marked a critical turning point in global governance and development of the gender equality regime, although the 1993 United Nations Vienna Declaration on Human Rights is widely touted as the first “gender-mainstreamed” human rights document for its recognition of women’s rights as human rights.1 The BPA called on governments and other governance actors to incorporate a gender analysis into all programs and policies in order to assess the differential gender impacts of those policies on women and men.2