The principle of equality is embedded in the Federal Constitutional Law under Article 7, which states that ‘all nationals are equal before the law’ and excludes any privileges based upon sex – among others. In 1998, an amendment to this Article provided the constitutional basis for the implementation of gender mainstreaming, by introducing the responsibility for all level of authorities (Federation, Länder and municipalities) to implement measures apt to achieve de-facto equality of men and women.
Federal level: The governmental body responsible for gender equality at the federal level is the Federal Minister for Education and Women’s Affairs, within the Austrian Federal Chancellery. The structure in charge of gender mainstreaming is the Department for Gender Equality policies and legal matters within the Directorate for Women and Equality.
Laws and Policies
The national foundations for the implementation of gender mainstreaming are articulated within Article 7 of the Federal Constitutional Law and in five subsequent cabinet decisions taken between 2000 and 2011 by the Council of Ministers (2000, 2002, 2004, 2008, 2011). These decisions established the IMAG GMB (2000); approved the implementation of a long-term work programme for gender mainstreaming (2002); and set out the requirements for a targeted implementation of gender mainstreaming at federal level (2008).
Methods & Tools
Several methods are being deployed at national level, such as gender budgeting, gender analysis, gender impact assessment, capacity-building and stakeholder consultations, among others. Several regions are deploying gender-mainstreaming methods. The methods most commonly used are capacity-building, gender budgeting, research and generation of knowledge, monitoring and sex-disaggregated statistics.