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Gender Equality Policy, Elites and Women Empowerment in Higher Education Institutions

Gender Equality Policy, Elites and Women Empowerment in Higher Education Institutions
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Author(s): Joshua Mugambwa (Makerere University, Uganda), Susan Mwebaza (Makerere University, Uganda) and Bridget Namubiru (Makerere University, Uganda)
Copyright: 2019
Pages: 18
Source title: Gender and Diversity: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Information Resources Management Association (USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-6912-1.ch006


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Gender equality, and its resultant empowerment of women, is a recent phenomenon in Africa. This study examined two questions; 1) To what extent do the elites in Institutions of Higher Education practise gender equality to women empowerment? 2) What are the inhibitions of the contribution of higher education towards women empowerment? The study was qualitative and cross-sectional. Data was obtained from reports and semi-structured interviews, as well as 5 focus group discussions. Semi-structured interviews respondents included 20 academic and 20 support staff. Findings showed that there is still a gap to enable women participate on the same footing as men. Women empowerment in Education takes leadership interest, networks, meritocracy as well as women assertiveness. Limitations to gender equality policy implementation among elites in higher education are individual, social-cultural and economic. Higher education is characterised by stereotypes and retrogressive cultural beliefs which are subtly reproduced throughout the education system. The gender equality policy (2009) has been implemented in favour of men; therefore, the situation has to be improved with concerted efforts by the various stakeholders. Gender disaggregated data should be used in Higher Education to assess women empowerment as well as tracking both quantitative and qualitative women empowerment outcomes in higher education.

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