& Events

Why public buyers should apply gender-responsive public procurement, and how. A new toolkit and report explain it.

Sep 20, 2022 | News

 Public institutions in the EU are major investors, spending some €2 trillion per year on the purchase of goods, services and works. Gender-responsive public procurement (GRPP) is procurement that promotes gender equality through the goods, services or works being purchased. Yet policymakers are unfamiliar with this promising approach, and authorities in the EU rarely implement it.

A 2021 study conducted by AEIDL on behalf of the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) highlighted a few exceptions of cities or regions leveraging GRPP as a gender mainstreaming method and tool. The study underscored an urgent need to raise awareness of GRPP and its benefits.

What is GRPP in practice? What are its benefits?

Buyers and suppliers must assess the impact of all their purchases of goods, services and works on women’s and men’s needs, interests and concerns. Once this needs assessment has been done, they should then design and deliver contracts aimed at reducing gender inequalities. GRPP does not necessarily mean higher costs, but does require knowledge and capacity.

GRPP can help to:
– Raise the number of women in the workforce.
– Balance the number of women and men in the workforce, especially in sectors with under-representation of one of the sexes.
– Improve working conditions, e.g., in health and safety, for jobs/sectors where health hazards may be different for women and men; or in wages, for traditionally low-paid jobs/sectors where women are the main workforce.
– Address gendered wage inequalities.
– Improve work-life balance and the sharing of care responsibilities between women and men.
– Balance teams’ composition.
– Address the different needs that women and men beneficiaries/end-users might have in relation to the goods, services or works to be purchased.

What are the tools that AEIDL developed on behalf of EIGE to support buyers in the implementation of GRPP?

  • a practical step-by-step toolkit serving as a practical guide on how to incorporate gender equality and apply GRPP across the different stages of the procurement cycle
  • a final research report presenting the main findings of this project, followed by a selection of case studies and policy recommendations
  • a brief for gender equality experts and procurement practitioners 
  • a factsheet explaining in a simple way what GRPP is, its benefits and how it can be applied.