Gender Based Analysis Plus: An Important Conversation

On April 28th, 2021, we were the proud hosts of a knowledge-sharing event that centred around gender-based analysis. Participants from several organizations convened to discuss what it means, why it’s important, and ways to use GBA+ as a lens in crafting policy, completing
analysis and designing programs and services. During this discussion, we heard from the participants and listened to the ways in which they have experienced GBA+ in their own lives. This was the first meeting and there are three more planned for the future, including one next week. We were pleased to hear from Anna Cameron, Research Associate in Fiscal and Economic Policy at The School of Public Policy, University of Calgary. Her current research is focused on the application of Gender-Based Analysis+ (and other frameworks for gender and intersectional analysis) to social and economic policy questions. It was a pleasure to listen and learn how she has implemented GBA+ into her own research. She explained why GBA+ matters in research and how gender-based analysis actually helped uncover other ways of tackling the issue of poverty in British Columbia. Following Anna’s presentation, participants moved to break-out rooms, each lead by a WEC facilitator. Participants focused on key questions sharing their experiences, and learning from one another. Some key ideas included:

  • If organizations collaborate, they can help each other apply GBA+ in their work as practitioners
    and across sectors.
  • It is important to be educated about GBA+ and understand how it works. With knowledge, we
    can apply a GBA+ lens to policies and change how we deliver services from a more diverse, equitable or inclusive place and improve lives.
  • Using GBA+ as a centrepiece when developing policies. When GBA+ is not applied, women are adversely affected, e.g. victims of domestic violence face additional barriers when applying for banking services and acquiring decent credit ratings. Applying a GBA+ lens would reduce many
    financial barriers for victims of violence.
  • The importance of including women’s work in the census form. Thanks to advocacy, women’s caregiving, family and volunteer work in the community is now included in census data collected by the federal government.
  • Applying a GBA+ lens to most government data will show data gaps in our statistical understanding of women’s work, lives and experiences, especially for racialized women.
  • One size does not fit all. GBA+ is an important tool in helping communities and governments tailor/customize services to meet intersectional needs.
  • Applying GBA+ to issues surrounding accessible and affordable public transit will reveal significant gaps in services and barriers to access for people with low and modest incomes.

For WEC staff, it was an enlightening experience and reinforced the importance of hosting events like this. Everyone felt as if it was a safe space to share their opinions, and, in turn, everyone felt heard. For more information, follow us on social media! And if you have any
questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our event coordinator Esther Germain, at

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