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The case study shows how improvements in gender justice are possible even in one of the world’s most gender unequal countries. It illustrates how the mandatory introduction and mainstreaming of Gender Responsible Budgeting by the Pakistan government, and the introduction of a mobile app to enhance budget monitoring by local women and girls, contributed to an increase in government spending on women and girls’ health, education and income support and in school enrolment. The case study also highlights how the mutually reinforcing influence of women’s rights organizations, allies in government and international donors can interact to bring about transformative change. Given the multiple economic and health benefits from girls’ schooling the case study will be relevant to any government wanting to create a fairer more inclusive future, a just recovery from COVID and help to build resilience to future shocks.

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