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Priming resilience through intra-household change: addressing gender norms

July 2018

This research in Nepal and Niger highlights how individuals and intra-household socio-cultural norms impact resilience strategies, through exploring the effects of the “Household Dialogue,” an intervention designed to foster inclusive decision-making and gender equity in the household.

The research found that improving women’s empowerment at the household level can catalyze resilient behaviours at both household and community levels. Women’s meaningful participation in community groups and activities can build their resilience capacities, but their ability to participate is often hindered by socio-cultural norms that limit their time and mobility.

This approach increased individuals’ participation and agency in community-level decision-making. Women with knowledge and skills that could contribute to household and community resilience were included in decision-making processes instead of being discouraged or silenced. Resilience-focused programs must invest in addressing intra-household gender dynamics, alongside community- and systems-level changes, to unlock the full value of the strategic program approach.