New Chapter on Gender Quality Measurement

Congratulations to Drs. Leah Levac and Deborah Stienstra on their chapter in a recently published book Counting Matters: Policy, Practice, and the Limits of Gender Equality Measurement in Canada, edited by Christina Gabriel and L. Pauline Rankin. This book investigates how the rise in gender equality measurement contributes to, and falls short of, effective gender equality policy implementation. Leah and Deborah's chapter, with Petrina Beals and Jessica McCuaig, is called "Advancing Intersectional Considerations in Measuring Gender Equality: A Community Vitality Index in Labrador."

In their chapter, the authors present a case study on the process of developing a well-being framework and index called the community vitality index (CVI) in Happy ValleyGoose Bay, Labrador. The CVI was to be used to determine the possible impacts on women's well-being of the construction of a hydroelectric dam nearby. The authors highlight the challenges of, and potential for new approaches to, technocratic measurement (the use of indicators or quantifiable data) in gender equality.

They suggest that frameworks such as the CVI, produced through participatory processes that include diverse women and push against some of the risks of technocratic measurement in gender equality measurement, are a promising way to advance women’s well-being and thus gender equality in Canada. However, they also recognize that the neo-liberal logics underpinning indicator culture (the growing reliance on measurement tools, particularly in the form of quantification) pose a threat to how women’s well-being is understood in policy discussions

Learn more about Counting Matters