admin • 8 May 2018
in group DSA Ireland
Event date 1 Jun 13:00 - 17:00
Event location John Hume Board Room John Hume Building

The DSAI Gender Study Group invites you to: 

Date: 1st June   Time: 13.00- 1700

Venue:  John Hume Board Room,  Maynooth University,  Maynooth, Co. Kildare. 

Register for this free event here:

For some years now the concept of gender justice has been posed as the best overarching frame for the understanding of women and development, and in pursuit of the empowerment of women.The history of gender mainstreaming is now being reassessed and its limitations realised. For many it is a problem related to depolitisation whereby a technical fix is substituted for a genuine movement for social transformation.

There is a sense that the project for ‘gender justice’ has stalled due to the loss of credibility of the mainstreaming agenda, the failure of the human rights frame to take its place in a period of austerity, and an assault on the living standards of working women. A particular problem has been that of finding common ground between the gender equity policies, projects and programmes and the ongoing struggle to assert women’s right and combat inequality and oppression.

It is in this context of honest reflection and re-energising that we pose the need to interrogate the concept of gender justice from a contextual, conceptual and power-knowledge perspective.

We have invited a wide range of national and international researchers, practitioners and policy makers to make a concerted effort, in a collegial atmosphere, to push the debate forward while informing each other from our very different subject positions.

We welcome active participants to this 'think-in' to share in this effort. Attendance is free but places are limited so please RSVP.



Marcella Lopez Levy


Marcela Lopez Levy is a development studies lecturer in the UK and a researcher with Latin American Bureau. She is author of a book on Argentina under the Kirchners: The legacy of left populism amongst other publications.

Dr Levy will be speaking on the #NiUnaMenos campaign against gender based violence that began in Argentina.  

Ni Una Menos is "Not one [woman] less"  an Argentine fourth-wave grassroots feminist movement, which has spread across several Latin American countries, that campaigns against gender-based violence. In its official website, Ni una menos defines itself as a "collective cry against machista violence." The movement regularly holds protests against femicides, but has also touched on topics such as gender roles, sexual harassment, gender pay gap, sexual objectification, legality of abortion, sex workers' rights and transgender rights. 


Maitrayee Mukhopadhyay


Maitrayee Mukhopadhyay, PhD, Senior Advisor at the Royal Tropical Institute in the Netherlands is a social anthropologist specialised in social development with a focus on gender and development. She has 30 years of experience in gender and development research, advisory work, teaching and training.

Her most recent book is  Feminist Subversion and Complicity - Governmentalities and Gender Knowledge in South Asia

Her argument around gender mainstreaming is that:

Gender mainstreaming in the 1990s became the principle strategy by which governments and development organisations set out to take the gender agenda. Despite great optimism, 20 years later it is difficult to find any review of gender mainstreaming which has more than a few positive aspects to report among a litany of failures. Gender mainstreaming has taken many forms, and has been rolled out in a variety of organisations from multilaterals, to governments, to small and large non-governmental organisations (NGOs). Yet critiques and reviews are almost universally negative, and several commentators question the viability of gender mainstreaming, seeing it as an irredeemably failed strategy. Future feminist engagements with development institutions cannot be about ‘doing more of the same better’ but rather these strategies need to radically change.


Fenella Porter


Fenella Porter is Gender Advisor for Oxfam UK, having previously  taught  on  the International Development MSc  at  Birkbeck  College,  University  of  London.
She is the author of the chapter on gender and NGOs in the Handbook of Development and Social Change.

Fenella Porter is the author of the chapter on gender and NGOs in the Handbook of Development and Social Change where she argues that:
“The  interests  of  women  are  represented  by  being  inserted  into  the  development  system  often  via  international  NGOs  operating  successfully  at  the highest  levels  of  policy  making. This has had a specific  impact  on  the  meaning  of  gender  equality,  in  which  the  interests  of  women  are  aligned  with  instrumentalised  ideas  of  economic  and  political  participation  reduced  to  buzzwords  that  garland  policy  discourses,  rather  than  with  more  politicised  ideas  of  empowerment  and  women’s  rights”. 


12.30 - 13.00: Welcome and Light Lunch

hosted by Director of MUSSI, Linda Connolly

13.00 - 14.45: Round Table 1Gender Justice and Development Futures (Facilitator: G. Honor Fagan

13.10 - 13.40: Maitrayee Mukhopadhyay- Including gender or governing gender: gender and development futures

13.40 - 13.55: Claire McGing- Remedying a 'democratic deficit'? Electoral gender quotas after Beijing

13.55 – 14.15: Marcela López- NiUnaMenos in Argentina: the blossoming of a new political movement with deep roots in feminist organising and communication 

14.45 - 15.00: Coffee Break

15.00 - 16.45: Round Table 2:  Gender Justice and Development Interventions (Facilitator: Angela Veale)

15.05 - 15.25: Fenella PorterThe discursive landscape of non-governmental action in development: the inevitable failure of international NGO’s to represent the interests of women? 

15.25 - 15.40: Carol Ballantine- The personal is still the political: evidence of partner violence during conflict in South Sudan 

15.40 - 15.55: Vanessa Liston- Measurement, data and gender injustice - current approaches and the value of social perspectives 

15.55 - 16.10: Tanja Kleibl- Do Western approaches to development de-legitimize women's resistance through "empowerment"?

16.45: Book Launch and Reception in MUSSI


Gender Justice Poster