Empowering all: Gender in policy and implementation for achieving transitions to sustainable energy
When it comes to energy infrastructures and energy use, the role of gender has been highly underestimated. Despite the evidence that social values, norms, and practices directly impact policy developments, energy innovations and use, there is insufficient research as well as solutions addressing gender biases in energy. While some argue that energy and climate policies are gender-neutral, studies highlight that they are relatively gender-blind (Clancy & Roehr, 2003; Khamati-Njenga & Clancy, 2002; Terry, 2009).
Through international collaboration with researchers from the field of gender and energy from 7 Countries, the UsersTCP Annex – Empowering all gathers state-of-the-art research on gender and energy use, identifies best practices, analyzes energy policies and technologies from gender perspectives, provides recommendations for a more efficient and inclusive policy design and implementation, supports ongoing efforts to design inclusive and gender-sensitive energy technologies. The duration of this project is three years, from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2023.
This Annex is divided into the following three subtasks, and ÖGUT is involved in all of them.
- For researchers – Subtask 1 aims to fill the knowledge gap. It deals with gathering existing research on energy, gender, and energy use, and reviews the state-of-the-art to identify best practices. Additionally, the literature is examined to further understand the ways energy policy and planning, grant directives, and interventions shape energy consumption in different countries. ÖGUT contributes to this subtask by focusing on literature and documents, particularly from the German-speaking countries.
- For policy makers and regulators – Subtask 2 analyzes the values and norms embedded in energy policies, their implementation by different governments, as well as the rationale behind the energy interventions by the private sector. The goal is to grasp how these diverse value systems and norms interact and counter each other. Furthermore, a comparative policy assessment tool is developed and tested for the evaluation of national policies on energy use and gender. Within this framework, ÖGUT is conducting intersectional policy analysis on the Austrian Energy and Climate Action Plan as well as evaluating the policy tool and supporting its adaptation.
- For businesses – Subtask 3 is centered on the collaboration with designers and developers within the energy sector, and user organizations to develop guidelines and prototypes for inclusive, gender-sensitive and efficient energy interventions at different stages such as early steps of technology development, data collection methods, user interfaces, user management, etc. The deliverables of this subtask will be factsheets, new templates for gathering user data, and prototypes for inclusive design. For this subtask, ÖGUT is responsible for developing and testing factsheets on inclusive and participatory design targeted at energy technology developers and carrying out a case study on the inclusiveness of an Austrian Energy Platform.
Austrian Society for Environment and Technology (ÖGUT), Azadeh Badieijaryani and Beatrix Hausner.
Clancy, J., & Roehr, U. (2003). Gender and energy: Is there a Northern perspective? Energy for Sustainable Development, 7(3), 44–49. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0973-0826(08)60364-6
Khamati-Njenga, B., & Clancy, J. (2002). Concepts and issues in gender and energy. ENERGIA. Leusden, The Netherlands: ENERGIA.
Terry, G. (Ed.). (2009). Climate change and gender justice. Practical Action Pub.