The first efforts for implementing gender mainstreaming in Greece were made in the 2000s, when the General Secretariat for Gender Equality (GSGE) actively participated in the planning process of the third Community Support Framework (CSF) 2000–2006, which is Greece’s development programme financed by European Union (EU) Structural Funds. As a result, actions for gender equality were included in the operational programmes of the CSF, equality officers were appointed for each operational programme, and regional Committees for Gender Equality were set up across the country. The next opportunity for implementing gender mainstreaming occurred with the new CSF for 2007–2013, called the National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF), in which gender mainstreaming is described as an improvement factor for the quality of public policies. The participation of the GSGE resulted in the inclusion of a specific gender equality axis in the Administrative Reform Operational Programme, named ‘Enhancement of Gender Equality in all Fields of Public Administration’.
In 2010, an integrated gender-mainstreaming strategy at national level was launched within the framework of the National Programme for Substantive Gender Equality 2010–2013. According to the programme, ‘GSGE has ensured the required cooperation of the competent general secretaries, who shall promote the strategic goal of gender mainstreaming in central and regional policies of the country, so as to decrease the gender gap in the target group that the respective policies address’.
Established in 1985, the General Secretariat for Gender Equality (GSGE), which is part of the Ministry of Interior, is the government agency responsible for designing and monitoring the implementation of policies for gender equality in all sectors. In particular, it is in charge of implementing the national gender-mainstreaming strategy in the framework of the National Programme for Substantive Gender Equality 2010–2013. It also founded and supervises the Research Centre for Gender Equality (KETHI), which aims to enable women’s advancement in all areas of political, economic and social life, within the framework of the policies defined by GSGE.
In addition, the Ministry of Labour, Social Protection and Welfare has a Gender Equality Department, which is responsible for combating discrimination and promoting gender equality in employment and the labour market.
Laws and policies
A comprehensive national gender-mainstreaming strategy was launched in 2010 through the National Programme for Substantive Gender Equality, which identifies gender mainstreaming in public policies and at all policy levels as one of its three pillars. The tasks for the implementation of gender mainstreaming are defined by the NSRF 2007–2013, the reference document for the programming of EU funds at national level. One of its operational programmes (Administrative Reform, Axis 3) sets out five projects, all of which are still being implemented (except the last one, which has been completed):
- Development of methodologies and tools for monitoring and evaluating the integration of gender equality in all public policies;
- Setting up of a monitoring structure for the integration, monitoring and evaluation of gender-equality policies across public policies and interventions;
- Gender impact assessment of 100 laws and regulations;
- Gender-equality training for civil servants;
- Creation of a Guide for Gender-Equality Policies regarding the customisation and implementation of all NSFR operational programmes and other EU-funded programmes.
Methods and tools
A variety of methods are being deployed and several guides and tools have been made available for different levels of administration. The involvement of stakeholders and gender experts has been central in the implementation of gender mainstreaming: five thematic expert committees – involving experts, academics and policymakers – have been formed in the five priority areas (gender-based violence; employment; library; arts and culture; gender mainstreaming), and they are consulted systematically in all phases of the policy cycle. Gender budgeting and gender impact assessment are part of the projects designed under the NSFR 2007–2013.