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“Efforts to reduce HIV transmission among key populations most affected by HIV - gay men and other men who have sex with men (MSM), people who inject drugs (PWID), sex workers (SWs), and transgender (trans) people - and to extend life for those who are living with HIV will fall short if they do not meaningfully address the gender norms and inequalities that shape key populations’ risk of HIV and their ability to access prevention, care, and treatment services.”

This toolkit is designed to provide practical guidance to governments, funders, civil society organisations (CSOs), and other implementing partners on conducting a gender analysis and using findings to inform HIV prevention, care, and treatment programmes with key populations. As explained in the toolkit, “A gender analysis can be used to increase the effectiveness of HIV prevention, care, and treatment activities for key populations by identifying the specific gender issues in a given context, describing how they could affect a program’s goals, and identifying ways to work around or transform gender-related barriers and leverage gender-related opportunities.”

To provide the necessary guidance, the toolkit:

  • Outlines key considerations and steps for conducting a gender analysis for HIV programming with key populations;
  • Explores how to engage with stakeholders, including key population members, in a meaningful partnership;
  • Shares lessons learned from a comprehensive gender analysis in Kenya and an abridged gender analysis in Cameroon; and
  • Provides tools and resources for conducting a gender analysis with key populations.

The toolkit has been developed for the LINKAGES across the Continuum of HIV Services for Key Populations Affected by HIV (LINKAGES) project, which is a global project dedicated to key populations most affected by HIV: MSM, PWID, SWs, and transgender people. Operating across central and eastern Asia, Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean, LINKAGES’ goal is to accelerate the ability of governments, key population organisations, and private sector providers to plan, deliver, and optimise services that reduce HIV transmission among key populations and extend life for those who are HIV-positive. According to the document, this toolkit is the first of its kind to provide practical guidance for a gender analysis with the four key populations that the LINKAGES project serves.

It includes the following sections:


  • LINKAGES Project
  • The role of gender integration in HIV programming for key populations

Key considerations before conducting a gender analysis

  • Which gender analysis framework should be used?
  • When should a gender analysis be conducted?
  • Who should conduct a gender analysis?
  • What information sources should be used in a gender analysis?

Gender analysis steps

  • Step 1: Plan for a gender analysis
  • Step 2: Conduct a desk review (secondary data)
  • Step 3: Conduct in-depth interviews and/or focus group discussions (primary data)
  • Step 4: Analyze data and synthesize findings
  • Step 5: Review and prioritize gender analysis findings and recommendations with stakeholders
  • Step 6: Package and disseminate findings and recommendations


The appendices contain sample informed consent forms and sample interviews guides for the different key populations, as well as other practical resources.

Free to download


Number of Pages: 



FHI360 website on July 6 2017.

Photo credit: Neil Freeman