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Review of the African Development Bank’s Gender Equality Results

In 2011, Itad conducted a review of the African Development Bank's gender equality strategy, by focusing on projects completed between 2009 and 2011.


The African Development Bank sees itself as playing a catalytic role in promoting gender equality in the continent. In 2011, a review was conducted of the Bank’s gender strategy.

The review

Whilst this review provided useful recommendations, it did not adequately assess the Bank’s gender equality results. Therefore, the review assessed the actual gender equality results achieved by the Bank by focusing on projects that were completed between 2009 and 2011. Various departments of the Bank were interested in the results of the review, namely the Results Department for designing a new Gender strategy, the Operations Department in designing new operations and the Evaluation Department as an input into a comprehensive evaluation of gender at the Bank.

Our approach

Itad led a small team to conduct the evaluation, whose expertise included gender mainstreaming, evaluation and International Financial Institutions. Three main methods were used – document review, focused case studies and a staff survey. To conduct the document review, a stratified sample of 62 projects out of a possible 145 were selected to study, including one from every country where the Bank works and a proportionate representation of sectors. Each project was scored according to the extent to which it had achieved gender equality results.

Those projects that scored the best were selected to use as case studies and the Task Managers for the projects were interviewed, in order to provide richer information on the gender equality results of the projects. The survey was sent to Task Managers of the selected projects and was designed to uncover their perceptions of gender equality at the Bank. Draft results were presented to some staff at the Bank and then submitted in a final report.

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