Sendai GAP: Frequently Asked Questions

1.     What is the Sendai GAP?

“Sendai GAP” is the short title for the “Gender Action Plan to Support Implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030”. It is a global plan that was launched in March 2024 and runs until 2030, which sets out nine key objectives on different aspects of gender-responsive disaster risk reduction. It includes 33 recommended gender equality actions, with many practical examples, mainly for use at national and local levels by governments and other stakeholders. It supports more effective implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 (Sendai Framework).

2.     What does the Sendai GAP aim to achieve?

The goal of the Sendai GAP is to accelerate achievement of the Sendai Framework goal, outcome, guiding principles, priorities and targets by substantially increasing resource allocations, activities and impacts of gender-responsive disaster risk reduction and substantially decreasing gender-related disaster risk by 2030.

3.     Why was the Sendai GAP developed?

The immediate trigger for development of the Sendai GAP in 2023 was the Sendai Framework Midterm Review (SF-MTR) during 2022-2023, as well as the Agreed Conclusions of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66) which called for the development of a gender action plan for the Sendai Framework. An analysis of gender and social inclusion in country and thematic reports to the SF-MTR demonstrated good practices and highlighted that governments considered addressing gender inequality as one of the key priorities in disaster risk reduction that required more attention towards 2030. This was also made clear in regional, stakeholder and UN system agencies’ reports, as well as in the final MTR-SF report, which concluded that a gender action plan was essential. All of this built on a growing body of evidence over many years that gender inequality exacerbates disaster risk, and that differential gender roles in societies mean that the impacts of disasters on women, men and people of diverse genders are often different from each other.

4.     How was the Sendai GAP developed?

The Sendai GAP was developed through a multi-stakeholder process. 77 countries nominated focal points and focal points from 65 countries participated in online consultations and/or made written comments. Over 500 non-state stakeholders also engaged, including United Nations entities, the Sendai Framework Women and Gender Stakeholders Group (with many of their grassroots women’s organizations attending meetings), regional women’s networks, other key civil society networks in disaster risk reduction, academics and other experts. The process was co-led by UNDRR, UNFPA and UN Women, that convened three rounds of consultations in all regions of the world during the second half of 2023.

5.     What are the key objectives of the Sendai GAP?

The Sendai GAP has nine key objectives that related to the four priorities of the Sendai Framework:

Key objectives under Sendai Framework Priority 1: Understanding disaster risk

  1. Increase the availability of sex, age, income and disability disaggregated data and qualitative information on gender and disaster risk
  1. Use gender analysis to generate and apply disaster risk knowledge in decision-making

Key objectives under Sendai Framework Priority 2: Strengthening disaster risk governance to manage disaster risk

  1. Mainstream gender equality across laws, policies, strategies, plans and institutions for disaster risk reduction, informed by relevant international treaties and agreements
  1. Increase meaningful participation and empowerment of women and gender stakeholders in disaster risk governance

Key objectives under Sendai Framework Priority 3: Investing in disaster risk reduction for resilience

  1. Mainstream gender equality criteria into risk-informed development and disaster risk reduction investments
  1. Increase funding allocations and improve access to financing for disaster risk reduction initiatives that advance gender equality

Key objectives under Sendai Framework Priority 4: Enhancing disaster preparedness for effective response and to “Build Back Better” in recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction

  1. Implement gender-responsive and inclusive end-to-end multi-hazard early warning systems and anticipatory action
  1. Plan for and invest in gender-responsive disaster recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction
  1. Ensure access to sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights, and prevention and response to gender-based violence in the context of disasters

6.     Who will implement the Sendai GAP?

The Sendai GAP is intended for use by everyone working on disaster risk reduction and/or gender equality in all countries and regions. As with the Sendai Framework , implementation by governments at local and national levels is the key to success. Close partnership between disaster risk reduction and gender equality actors is essential, and women’s organizations and other gender and social inclusion stakeholders will be integral to the implementation of the Sendai GAP. The objectives and recommended actions of the Sendai GAP break down gender-responsive disaster risk reduction into priority areas, which can strengthen existing disaster risk reduction efforts being undertaken by governments, as well as regional and international bodies and agencies, including donors and United Nations system entities, that wish to support implementation. The Sendai GAP can assist governments and stakeholders in planning for more gender-responsive disaster risk reduction, it could serve as the basis for regional, national or local plans on gender-responsive disaster risk reduction, or for mainstreaming into wider plans on disaster risk management and/or gender equality. The most important thing is to use it in ways that lead to implementation, including adequate funding for the recommended actions.

7.     Do countries have to implement the Sendai GAP?

The Sendai GAP provides governments and other stakeholders with a plan of action on how to reduce disaster risk overall by making risk reduction efforts more responsive to gender inequalities and differences in risk. This supports more effective implementation of the Sendai Framework , which governments around the world are already implementing. Neither the Sendai GAP nor the Sendai Framework are legally binding.

8.     What is the role of non-governmental stakeholders in implementing the Sendai GAP?

The Sendai GAP supports an all-of-society approach to disaster risk reduction, as set out in the Sendai Framework. This means that governments at all levels need to work with civil society, the private sector, academic and technical institutions to achieve real change in reducing risk. Part 2 of the Sendai GAP on Key Actors aims to set out who needs to engage specifically on gender equality and social inclusion in disaster risk reduction at local, national, regional and international levels. The Sendai GAP also emphasizes the need for government policy and its implementation to be based on meaningful participation and representation of women’s organizations and other gender and inclusion stakeholders, which is not the case in many countries.

9.     How does the Sendai GAP relate to the Sendai Framework?

The Sendai Framework is the global roadmap for reducing human and economic loss as a result of disasters. In 2023, its Midterm Review concluded and its global reports, as well as many regional, thematic and national reports, identified gender equality as a priority area in disaster risk reduction. The Sendai GAP was developed to support this by identifying key objectives and recommended actions under each of the four Sendai Framework priorities, for implementation by governments and other stakeholders, with support from regional and international institutions, including United Nations system entities.

10.   Does the Sendai GAP include reporting, monitoring and evaluation?

A set of indicators are being developed and will be made available by the end of 2024 to monitor implementation, progress and impact of the Sendai GAP. These can be reported by countries as “custom indicators” in the Sendal Framework Monitor. For non-governmental stakeholders, a channel is being developed on the Sendai Framework Voluntary Commitments online platform to set out commitments and report back on them.

11.   Does the Sendai GAP include persons with disabilities?

While the focus of the Sendai GAP is on gender and disasters, it recognises the elevated risks in disasters for persons with disabilities and especially the strong intersection between gender and disability when it comes to risk. It is drafted to be inclusive of persons with disabilities, referring to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the need for accessibility and universal design, and the importance of meaningful participation and engagement of persons with disabilities as stakeholders in reducing disaster risk.

12.   What does the Sendai GAP say about intersectionality?

The Sendai GAP uses the concept of intersectionality, based on Kimberlé Crenshaw. This is a way of describing how different forms of inequality or discrimination compound each other, creating a new type or level of disadvantage and risk. Some of the intersectional risks highlighted in the Sendai GAP that often compound gender inequality include living in poverty, having a disability, being displaced or living in a conflict zone, living in a remote rural area or island, or being part of a socially marginalized community.

13.   How is the implementation of the Sendai GAP being funded and otherwise resourced?

The funding for the implementation of the Sendai GAP will come from national or sub-national budgets and the same regional and international financial institutions and donors that already support the implementation of the Sendai Framework. However, one of the key messages of the Sendai GAP is that more funding is needed for gender-responsive disaster risk reduction, as well as greater priority given for gender equality objectives in existing disaster risk reduction initiatives. The clear objectives and actions set out in the Sendai GAP give practical examples on how all actors can support gender-responsive disaster risk reduction. They can also guide national budget planners, regional and international funders and financial institutions, and those offering technical support through programmes and projects.

14.   Who can I contact if I have additional questions about the Sendai GAP?

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