The EU Plan of Action on Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment in Development (GAP) was approved by the Council on 14th of June 2010. GAP is an operational gender action plan for the EC and the Member States. This Plan of Action offers a range of concrete actions and targets to enhance EU leadership in promoting gender equality in development and ensuring concerted action with EU Member States which leads to significant impacts on the ground. EU GAP also applies to cooperation in the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) region including the six Eastern Partnership countries (EaP). The latest developments on programming modalities include the need to integrate cross-cutting issues, in particular gender, in all interventions. This means that EU Delegations should have detailed information to integrate gender equality and women's empowerment in the different sectors of cooperation (including budget support programmes), and to conduct gender policy and political dialogue with partners countries, this is to say, to include “gender mainstreaming in bilateral and regional programming documents as well as in the design of future actions”. Based on the above the EC commissioned a study to be undertaken by AETS to provide updated gender profiles in each EaP country with the aim of providing a background on the equality situation in each country as a basis for future dialogue and for integrating gender perspectives in future programming (mainstreaming). To do so, and in addition to our project manager, AETS has recruited six local gender experts for each country and six local statistics experts with experience in sex-disaggregated statistics. This is the key for the implementation of this assignment; gender analysis implies examining national data and national documents and this requires access to a wide range of local sources; therefore the knowledge of the local context and the language is crucial in these multi-country studies.

Governance and Human Development

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