Aims and objectives
The 3R method involves surveying and analysing an activity in terms of gender equality, on the basis of Representation, Resources and Realia. This is a means of exploring the norms that govern work, the division of power between women and men, and the ways in which gender affects the nature and organisation of the activity. The method was developed in the JämKom project on municipalities and gender equalit y, headed by Gertrud Åström under the aegis of the Swedish Association of Local Authorities in the late 1990s. It has been used mainly in various municipal activities.
Results and impact
Not been evaluated as such
The method stresses that all three Rs are required to gender-mainstream an activity. The first two are about compiling statistics, and serve as the springboard for discussion about the third and last R.
1R — Representation: What is the gender distribution at every level of the activity and decision-making process, i.e. among staff, decision-makers and users?
2R — Resources: How are the resources in the activity, in the form of time, money and space, distributed between women and men?
3R — Realia: How did representation and resource distribution between the sexes come to be as they are? The purpose of the realia is to address the question of what it all really involves, and to demonstrate what may be considered self-evident in this activity: the gender-related norms and notions that shape it. Providing an answer to this question calls for knowledge of gender studies about the conditions of men’s and women’s lives and constructions of gender.
Carrying out analyses on the basis of gender is no easy task, since the phenomena to be analysed and problematised are usually perceived as natural and normal. To permit a reliable analysis, collecting quantitative data in steps one and two is therefore not always sufficient. Quantitative studies may therefore need to be supplemented by qualitative ones, for example in the form of interviews with decision-makers, employees or users. Thereafter, the results from the various investigations should be compared with established objectives and decisions taken on whether the activity needs reforming and, if so, how.
The method was later developed into the 4R method with a fourth step added: Realisation. This method is a further development of the 3R method by the Swedish Gender Mainstreaming Support Committee (JämStöd) in conjunction with its final report on the scope for gender mainstreaming (in Swedish; SOU 2007:15 Stöd för framtiden – om förutsättningar för jämställdhetsintegrering). The 4R method may be used as a basis for analysing and surveying activities, and for providing an overview of how activities are run and financed, and how they should be changed to reduce gender inequality(Aktivt Jämställdhetsarbete – Jämtegrering och 3R-metoden i kommunala verksamheter, Hälsa, Arbete och Kön, Jämställdhetsarbete – en utmaning för kommuner och landsting, all publications from SALAR/SKL)