Gender Essentials

Data and Measurement

Data for decision-making is a TCI guiding principle

All TCI stakeholders and partners use data in all aspects of engagement with TCI – from the expression of interest to program design, implementation and graduation and ongoing monitoring of program progress. Near real-time data for decision-making (D4D) is a guiding principle of TCI. As such, TCI strengthens the capacity of local governments and its partners to use data for problem-solving and better decision-making.

Why look at gender indicators?

Because what is measured is more likely to be prioritized, it is important to include indicators that measure the outcomes of gender intentional interventions. These indicators help reveal barriers to achieving success. They can provide vital information for adjusting programs and activities so that they better achieve gender equality goals and do not create adverse impacts on women and men, girls and boys. They can also be used to measure gender mainstreaming within local governments and TCI’s operations.

What are gender indicators?

There are three main types of gender indicators: sex-disaggregated indicators, sex-specific indicators and those related to gender power relations and systems.

What information can gender indicators provide?

  • Identify points of intersectionality where people’s lives are impacted and shaped by their identities, social factors and relationships. These can create intersecting forms of privilege and oppression depending on a person’s context and existing power structures such as patriarchy, ableism, colonialism, imperialism, homophobia and racism. [Source: UN Women]
  • Break down situations by social stratifiers: sex, age, economic status, education level, place of residence, ethnicity or race, etc.
  • Count women of different types, not only the number of women of reproductive age but also those who are married and unmarried, youth (aged 15 to 24 years) or very young adolescents (aged 10 to 14 years), employed or unemployed, or education status
  • Count the number of women who are: able to leave the house, make their own decisions about health, make daily purchases, decide how many children to have, decide how to use their own money, have their own money, worked in last week/year, have a bank account, believe childbearing is women’s concern, believe contraception is women’s concern, believe contraception is for promiscuous women, for example.
  • Assess women’s autonomy: Who usually makes decisions about reproductive health care for yourself? Who usually makes the decision on whether or not you should use contraception?
  • Identify relevant women’s organizations and organizations promoting gender integration and supporting gender equality.
  • Provide evidence of intended outcomes and impact of interest to donors and for use in advocacy.

How to get started

Define your program objective
Define your program objective. For example, is your objective to contribute to your country’s FP2030 commitment? Or, is your objective simply to increase uptake of informed choice family planning? Once you have defined your program objective, consider what data is already being collected. Will it be possible to monitor your program objective with this data?
Identify relevant gender indicators
Ask yourself the following questions:
  • Do sex-disaggregated data/indicators already exist? For example, do facility records collect data by sex, age and method of modern contraception?
  • What sex-specific indicators are important to you to collect to assess your program’s success? For example, do you have data on the number of contraceptive methods being offered?
  • Are gender equality and power relations indicators already being collected? For example, do you know if women have access to financial resources and transportation to seek family planning services?
Map the potential gender indicators
Map the potential gender indicators to existing data sources and/or note which data would need to be collected.
Consult with partners
Consult with partners to prioritize which gender indicators to include in your measurement plans. Are they already collecting this data, and can they share it with you? Or are they willing to undertake a new data collection effort?

Considerations when prioritizing gender indicators

When choosing which gender indicators to include consider:

  • What is achievable and feasible?
  • What could lead to substantial change/impact?
  • Which indicators are directly linked to program outcomes and impact?
  • Which data gathering techniques or sources are most practical or cost-effective?
  • What data sources and analyses already exist which can be leveraged?
  • How can data and analytics support implementation, review and learning related to key problems that your program is likely to face?
  • Seek a portfolio of indicators that span sex-disaggregated, sex-specific and gender power relations and systems data.

Illustrative indicators aligned with the integration of gender into TCI’s stages of engagement

The following indicators are examples of what could be measured and monitored throughout a local government’s engagement with TCI.

% of marketing materials that are gender intentional
% of advocacy efforts that incorporate gender intentional messaging
Gender integration activities included within expression of interest form
Gender integration activities requirement for selection
Gender integration activities requirement for selection
Gender integration activities requirement for selection
% of coaching materials that are gender intentional
Coachee needs assessment conducted
% of coaches who are women
Master coach role developed
% of tools and guidance materials in TCI-U that encourage gender integration
% of tools and guidance materials in TCI-U that encourage gender integration
% of programs that integrate gender
% of funds that are allocated to gender integration activities
% of programs that utilize gender integration funds
Rules of engagement is generated
% of activities related to gender integration knowledge sharing
Gender integrated into RAISE tool and processes
Coaches trained on addressing institutional barriers for women
Gender champion identified
# of alumni supported by gender champion
# of alumni supported by gender champion
# of alumni supported by gender champion
# of alumni supported by gender champion


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Biases in data can perpetuate stereotypes that exacerbate existing inequalities. These biases can occur at any and all stages of data design, collection, analysis, interpretation, presentation and use. Tools such as Data 2X can help, available at Other useful tools include OECD Development Centre’s Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) and the World Bank Gender Data Portal.

Resources on data and measurement

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