Reflecting on eight years of implementing activities, collaborating with various stakeholders, and providing technical assistance for infrastructure development, the Indonesia Infrastructure Initiative (IndII) has conducted a lessons learnt workshop to review its approach to gender integration.
The workshop, held in Jakarta on 12 October 2016, was facilitated by Gender Consultant Gaynor Dawson with the support of IndII team members. The opening presentation by Gaynor presented her findings on strengths, areas for improvement, and recommendations for effectively addressing gender (and other social inclusion issues) in future activities. “While IndII has encouraged the increase of women’s representation in several of its activities, the program needs a more strategic direction that provides targeted objectives on gender integration in activity level. Greater government involvement (at national and local levels) is also required,” said Gaynor in her presentation.
A key feature of the workshop was lively group discussions amongst representatives from IndII’s program, Government of Indonesia (GoI) and Australia (GoA), other DFAT-funded project staff, and member of the design team for the new infrastructure facility that will commence in 2017. Participants engaged in eight key questions such as alignment of program objectives with DFAT’s policy and strategies:; the focus of program activities at various levels of government; available resources including staffing structures; community engagement; incentives and sanctions; leveraging opportunities ; working collaboratively with other DFAT-funded programs; and empowering women within local government.
Acknowledging the different interests and perceptions on how an infrastructure program should address gender and social inclusion issues, participants agreed that clear program objectives, strong leadership (DFAT, GoI and implementing teams) and proper resourcing are mandatory for achieving success.
“We are grateful with the inputs from all participants to IndII’s findings and experiences. The lesson learnt from IndII shows that there are some key achievements and room for improvement for the next infrastructure program. The most important thing for the next infrastructure program is to design and implement activities that translate the policy of Indonesian and Australian governments –gender or wider social inclusion, and bring positive changes to the life of the people,” said IndII Gender Officer Eko Utomo at the end of the session.