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Project Case Study

Identifying opportunities to eliminate gender-based violence in Pakistan

Supporting the Australian Government as it works to end violence against women

Gender disparities in Pakistan are amongst the worst in Asia. While the status of women varies considerably depending on urban or rural geographic location and class, Pakistani women very often bear the brunt of social marginalisation and unequal access to public services.

For example, limited access to education meant that only 40% of women were literate compared to 68% of men across the country (2009); in very remote areas, such as parts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, the figure falls to under 10%.

The Australian Government is committed to investing in women and girls to promote their leadership and economic empowerment. In 2011, it announced a global commitment to Eliminate Violence Against Women (EVAW) and support women affected by violence in developing countries.

Project info

Identifying opportunities to work towards the elimination of gender-based violence in Pakistan


  • 2013



  • Australian Government

In order to assess support requirements in Pakistan, we were contracted by the Australian Government in 2013 to conduct an extensive mapping exercise. This included detailing the extent of the EVAW development issue to be addressed, existing EVAW activities, and the policy and legislative context.

Points identified:

  • National and international studies which provide information on the incidence of VAW and prevalence in Pakistan
    Activities underway or planned by other figures to support the elimination of gender based violence
  • Relevant policy and legislative frameworks and structures for the protection of women’s rights and EVAW both at federal and provincial levels
  • Coordination mechanisms and networks for protection of women’s rights and EVAW.

Subsequently, Adam Smith International supported the Australian Government develop a Programming Options Paper which identified and recommended potential programming options for a targeted EVAW investment in Pakistan.

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