“Each and every person should have access to all the benefits that come out of development with no one person being left behind” – Dr Theresa Devasahayam, a Gender and Social Inclusion (GESI) Specialist with 24 years of experience in the area of gender.
According to Dr Theresa, Thailand has made great strides forward in being gender inclusive, having ratified many of the international conventions related to women’s and girls’ rights – yet there has been some evidence to show that the Gender Equality Act has been under-utilised and a lack of knowledge in gender budgeting at various levels makes it difficult for policymakers to address women's issues. GESI has been recognised as a critical aspect of the development process to address gaps that some groups of people might not have accessed the benefits of development to the same degree as the ‘better off’ in a society. Hence, it is important that in creating urban spaces, city planners take into consideration GESI-related data and how this might shape what the city looks like.
The GESI workshop for counterparts from the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) was conducted in late December. The workshop was aimed to raise awareness about GESI issues through practical examples, case studies, and hands-on activities. The workshop covered a wide range of relevant topics, including definitions of gender equality and social inclusion, its legal and institutional frameworks in the UK and Thailand, gender and social stratification, gender-disaggregated data, and gender-inclusive urban planning and policy. The other key objective was to raise an awareness that a GESI approach in the Integrated Data Hub (IDH) can address women’s needs and social challenges by including data like gender and gender-disaggregated data, age and age-disaggregated data, data related to persons with disability, data on income levels, data on ethnic and religious minorities, and data on migrants.
A total of 28 participants from 13 departments of the BMA attended the training. The training received high satisfaction ratings from the participants, with an overall satisfaction score of 83 per cent – supported by feedback that the workshop contents and presentation process enhanced their knowledge and awareness of applying GESI at work, and opened new perspectives on data collection related to GESI in order to cover more vulnerable groups.
“Excellent lecturer with very good explanation and example. Thank you so much.” – BMA personnel
“Thank you very much for conducting this training. It is very useful. I would like to express my appreciation for the organiser.” – BMA personnel
Phatthita Thitiphiromlarp (Tan), Team Lead of Integrated Data Hub of Bangkok, Thailand