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Oxfam Policy & Practice provides free access to Gender & Development and Development in Practice journal articles.

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This article offers strategies for women’s empowerment in conservative, tribal, and religious environments, based on an innovative programme in Pakistan. Mainstreaming Gender and Development (MGD) encouraged participants to build on their communities’ strengths, minimised resistance among families and communities by including them in the development process, and succeeded in building a cadre of women activists. Drawing on its experience, the author questions the importance of collective action, suggests that the selection of participants should be based on aptitude rather than socio-economic status, and highlights the potential for women’s empowerment in challenging environments.

This article is hosted by our co-publisher Taylor & Francis.

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