This STANDARD can be used both as a guide to implementing gender mainstreaming within the ESF and as a tool for assessing and monitoring existing practice.
The STANDARD contains requirements for the implementation of gender mainstreaming and specific actions in the ESF at both the European and national level. At the national level requirements are set out for national or regional operational programmes, national or regional implementation, and projects.
In the STANDARD a general model is used to describe the ESF.
However there may be national differences in terms of the implementation system:
- Some member states or regions develop ”programs” out of the ESF thematic priorities and Investment Priorities defined in the operational programmes. These programmes are often run by different Ministries or departments of ministries (for example Germany);
- Other member states develop ”action plans” based on the operational programmes which are executed in the regions of the member states (for example Sweden);
- A third version of implementation is the tendering of calls for projects directly from the OP priorities with no intermediate bodies (like for instance ministries) inbetween (for example Flanders and Czech Republic).
These different procedures and systems could mean that implementation requirements are not formulated in a programme or an action plan but in other documents steering the implementation. However, the general principles and requirements set out in the STANDARD can be used regardless of implementation system.
The four ESF cycles covered by the Standard are shown in this figure:
In this section, About the STANDARD, you can find out more on:
- Why a Standard on gender mainstreaming? Read more about what gender mainstreaming means, regulations and gender gaps and how it is related to the ESF.
- Who are the intended users?
- How is the Standard designed? Get an overview over the different parts of the Standard.
A Standard is a publication that provides rules, guidelines or characteristics for activities or their results, for common and repeated use.” Source: CEN