International Development, Community and Environment (IDCE)

Date of Award


Degree Type

Research Paper

Degree Name

Master of Arts in International Development and Social Change (IDSC)


International Development, Community and Environment

Chief Instructor

Denise Humphreys- Bebbington

Second Reader

Dianne Rocheleau


This paper uses a feminist political ecology framework to critically examine rural women’s relationship with UN-REDD programs throughout Latin America. It looks at the ways in which UN-REDD has attempted to integrate women into the larger REDD+ development paradigms vis-à-vis gender- mainstreaming. I pay particular attention to how gender dynamics operate in the context of REDD+ with respect to cultural sovereignty, access to land, and benefit sharing and draw on Ecuador’s National REDD+ Socio Bosque program to illuminate how National REDD+ programs can adversely affect rural women’s livelihoods despite UN-REDD’s discourse of “gender equality”. In light of these considerations, I argue that UN-REDD programs disadvantage women disproportionately and posit UN-REDD’s gender mainstreaming initiatives as ill equipped to address the concerns of activists and community members speaking out against REDD+ in their territories.



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