Integrating a gender perspective

Right now this year’s second Gender Adviser course is under way in Kungsängen. Thirty-four instructors and students from nineteen different countries – Australia, Austria, Canada, Croatia, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Romania, Slovenia, Sweden, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States and Zambia to be exact - both military officers and civilians, are taking part in the course provided by NCGM.

Photo: Jan Gustafsson
Photo: Jan Gustafsson
Photo: Jan Gustafsson
Photo: Jan Gustafsson

Major Joke Agterbos is one of them. Normally a human resource officer in the Dutch Army, she is now in preparation for a mission to Afghanistan. 

“I haven’t been involved in the application of gender perspectives in military operations before, so for me the learning curve is quite steep. But after the first few days I’m beginning to see how it all fits in so it’s a good time right now.”

The primary focus of the GENAD course is to educate and train Gender Advisers that are either in function in missions, are deploying to missions or will be working as a Gender Adviser in a national capacity. Director for the course is Commander Poul Martin Linnet.

“The gender advisers have a very important function. Recent mission experience has demonstrated the need to integrate a gender perspective into all phases of the planning and execution of operations in mission areas.”

“For instance, one of the results of working with the integration of a gender perspective is the realisation that you sometimes need female engagement teams as part of your force structure to be able to engage in a specific cultural context.”
The GENAD course is a mix of self-studies, advanced distributed learning, lectures, facilitated discussions and syndicate or individual case studies. The course is very interactive and every student is expected to take active part in discussions, exercises and syndicate work.

The next GENAD courses are planned for 5-16 February 2018, and 29 October - 9 November 2018.