Hira Wajahat (Stimulus; & Women in Energy Pakistan) and Dr. Rihab Khalid (Lucy Cavendish College, University of Cambridge) organised a Gender Equity and Energy Access Workshop on 02 August 2021 at Marriott Hotel Islamabad in Pakistan, in collaboration with the Pakistan Water & Power Development Authority (WAPDA).
Gender equity and energy access in the Global South was financed by the Global Sustainability Institute at Anglia Ruskin University as part of the UK Global Challenges Research Fund (QR-GCRF) initiative. Representatives from policy bodies, regulatory authorities, electric utilities, international donor agencies, NGOs, and others were invited from across Pakistan’s energy industry.
An introduction and important findings for Pakistan kicked off the one-day programme. Following that, a panel of leading energy experts responded to policy briefs in a panel discussion. Ms. Saadia Qayyum of the World Bank PK, Mr. Saad Latif of K-Electric, Mr. Mehroze Rafique of NEPRA, Mr. Zaigham Mehmood Rizvi, Chairman PM Housing Task Force, Brig. Shoaib Taqi (Retd) of WAPDA, Mr. Shah Jahan Mirza of PPIB, and Ms. Sobiah Becker of FCDO made up the panel.
Each panelist provided a 5-min response to the policy brief, discussing challenges and next steps for improving gender equity in Pakistan’s energy sector.
The workshop participants then divided into smaller groups to identify important problems and hurdles to gender equity in policy and practise during a question-and-answer session. Key highlights from each group were noted and addressed at the end of the session.
Gender sensitization was the topic of Session 3, which included brainstorming activities to discover strategies to achieve gender equality.
The event was well-received, and it highlighted the importance of incorporating women in the energy sector in order to boost economic growth.
Understanding energy as a much bigger issue with social, economic, and political components in addition to technology and infrastructure was a major takeaway. To address equality and sustainability, participants stressed the importance of multidisciplinary engagement within the energy sector.