Gender mainstreaming strategies for gender equality by local government authorities in Dodoma municipality and Mpwapwa district, Tanzania

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Sokoine University of Agriculture


Gender Mainstreaming Strategies (GMSs) have the potentiality for reducing gender gaps and hence enhancing gender equality in Local Government Authorities (LGAs). However, studies have not reached consensus on whether the internationally and nationally planned GMSs have significant effect on the intended achieved gender equality among LGA officials. This study was conducted in Dodoma Municipality and Mpwapwa District by capturing urban and rural settings respectively in Tanzania, so as to make an epistemological contribution to gender studies and development. Specifically, the study: (i) analyzed GMSs applied by LGAs, (ii) examined attitude of Local Government officials towards Gender Mainstreaming, (iii) determined men and women involvement in decision making among LGA officials and leaders and (iv) assessed gender equality levels among LGAs officials. A cross-sectional research design was used. Fifty eight officials were randomly selected from municipal and district departments. In the first place, among 67 wards, twenty wards were randomly selected. In the next stage ten villages and ten hamlets were randomly selected from the 20 wards. Fifteen officials were randomly selected from each of 10 Village Development Committees (VDCs) while 15 officials were randomly selected from each of the 10 Hamlet Development Committees (HDCs). The combination of 15 officials from the 10 VDCs and 15 officials from 10 HDCs, made a total of 300 officials. Quantitative data were analysed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) in which descriptive and inferential analyses were done, while qualitative data were analysed using content analysis. The results showed that most of GMSs were not well implemented; the overall gender equality level was found to be low (34.7% and 24.6% for male and female respondents respectively); hence more gender mainstreaming strategies have to be implemented at the LGA level so as to spearhead sustainable development. Since the equality level was generally found to be the same for both male and female, urban and rural officials, then, policy planners and LGAs gender sensitising bodies such as NGOs, media and CBOs should provide GM measures targeting both Mpwapwa District and Dodoma Municipality so as to make intervention in both rural and urban areas equally. Since large number of men reported high level of gender equality while the overall level of gender equality was low, then men should be used by policy makers as agents for change towards gender equality as they occupy many positions in LGAs compared to women. Generally the attitude of implementers towards GMs was negative. It was further concluded that there was no significant difference between urban and rural population with respect to attitude of LGA officials towards GMs. It is therefore recommended that, policy makers should consider changing implementers’ attitude when planning for GMSs; officials with high levels of GM knowledge should transmit this knowledge to others; the GMSs should aim at changing one’s attitude by targeting both urban and rural areas. Decision making level in the study areas was high; however, the significant difference in decision making between men and women, urban and rural was noticed. Hence, different interventions should be employed by policy makers and other actors to increase involvement in decision making by men and women as well as urban and rural population


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Gender mainstreaming, Mainstreaming strategies, Gender equality, Local government, Dodoma municipality, Mpwapwa district, GMSs, Tanzania