While you’re here… help us stay here.

Are you enjoying open access to policy and research published by a broad range of organisations? Please donate today so that we can continue to provide this service.


(En)countering resistance: strategies to respond to resistance to gender equality initiatives

Discrimination Sex discrimination Gender equality

This resource draws together some effective tools and strategies to prepare for and respond to backlash and resistance to gender equality initiatives. It’s intended to support the people working for gender equality in a range of sectors – education, sport, workplace, local government, health and media.

Every person or group pushing for progressive social change understands that at some point in our journey we’ll come up against people who don’t agree with what we are doing. Yet it still often takes us by surprise when people we thought would be our allies deny the problem or look away.

If you are working to promote gender equality and tackle inequality you can expect to meet resistance. It may occur in any setting. It may come from individuals or collectively, and from men or women.

How do you prepare for it? What are effective responses?

This publication describes the forms that resistance can take and provides some practical examples from local gender equality initiatives. There are also links to other useful resources from Australia and around the world.

It is guided by a Queensland University of Technology evidence review on backlash to gender equality by Michael Flood, Molly Dragiewicz and Bob Pease, commissioned by VicHealth in 2017.

We hope you find it a useful support as you advocate for equality for all.

Publication Details
Access Rights Type: