Sexuality: a missing dimension in development

Case Studies & Research
Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, SIDA
50 p.
Periodical title
Sida Concept Paper

Sexuality is of fundamental importance in the lives of all humans. Although sexuality is a natural part of human life it is often neglected and mainly dealt with in relation to reproduction, disease, violence and oppression. Sexuality related issues are often fraught with unease, shame and conflict, due to cultural, religious, political, social, economic, and other factors outside the control of individuals, particularly those who have less power in societies. Therefore, it is important to address issues of sexuality from a positive perspective building self-esteem through highlighting respect, equality, tenderness and love in order to improve the quality of life of people living in poverty. In order to address this need, and in an effort to contribute to the enlightening education of Sida staff and partners, Sida DESO/Tema commissioned this concept paper. The purpose of the paper is to illuminate the relationship between sexuality, rights and development. As the paper clearly shows, there are strong linkages between not just sexuality, and health and gender, but also with other sectors such as agriculture, roads and infrastructure, and human rights and good governance. These linkages have not previously been well conceptualized at Sida, which makes this concept paper groundbreaking and important.

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