14 December 2021

New framework on gender equality and procurement

Oxford Insights and Open Contracting Partnership have published a new framework on gender equality in procurement. It features a number of indicators that can be applied to governments procurement practices to evaluate, assess and do better, together with suppliers.

The paper notes that The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated many inequalities, including the ability for SMEs, women-led businesses and other underrepresented groups to participate in public procurement. Therefore, governments around the world need to understand and address the systemic obstacles that prevent these groups from participating in public procurement, and examine the specific challenges brought about by COVID-19, to understand how emergency situations affect these groups in a procurement context.

This framework aims to help governments to ask the right questions, and to properly assess successes and challenges of current and new policies and practices as they look to build an inclusive environment for public procurement. It argues that it will take an end-to-end approach to public procurement; looking at pre-market engagement all the way through to contract management and evaluation.

The indicators are divided in three main categories: are Policy, Laws and Regulations, Government Capacity and Internal Tools, and Accountability and Transparency. To find more information about these categories and about the ways in which these indicators can be applied to achieve more (gender) equality, download the full framework here.