Job Opening

Posting Title: Consultant on Gender and Care Economy in China
Department/Office: Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific
Duty Station: BANGKOK
Posting Period: 26 May 2023 - 31 May 2023
Job Opening Number: 23-Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific-209355-Consultant
Staffing Exercise N/A
United Nations Core Values: Integrity, Professionalism, Respect for Diversity
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Result of Service

• Provide the development of a policy advice on care-responsive and gender-sensitive policy reform in identified key policy areas with regard to the care economy in China, in collaboration with the primary consultant, based on consultations with key national stakeholders and disseminated among relevant line ministries.
• Co-facilitation of the national stakeholder consultation workshop that is aimed to validate the policy advice.

Work Location


Expected duration


Duties and Responsibilities

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the hard-earned socio-economic development gains over the past decades have been reversed, and existing inequalities, including gender inequality, have further deepened. Even before the pandemic, women and girls in Asia and the Pacific spent on average up to 11 hours a day on unpaid care and domestic work – four times more than men. ESCAP research and analysis at both regional, sub-regional and national levels reveals that of the various socioeconomic policy response measures instituted in responsive to the COVID-19 pandemic, less than 30 per cent are care sensitive and less than 10 per cent are gender differentiated (ESCAP, 2021). Although governments are striving to build back stronger and more resilient economies and societies, the few gender-responsive and care-sensitive measures that have been put in place have been short-lived or are at risk of being rolled back or undone once the crisis eases.

Unpaid care work is mainly performed by women and girls due to many factors, including social and cultural norms. From early on in their lives, the gendered nature and unequal burden of care and domestic work limit girls’ access to and opportunities for quality education, economic security and decent work. Although care work has traditionally been valued for its role in social reproduction, it remains largely unrecognized as an important macroeconomic variable that can contribute to sustainable economic growth and enhance the well-being of our societies.

There now exists a unique opportunity to better address the risks and vulnerabilities of women and girls and help them out of poverty, exclusion and marginalization. Governments must seize this opportunity to invest in the care economy by recognizing, redistributing and reducing unpaid care and domestic work. Rewarding paid care work, by promoting more and decent work for care workers; and guaranteeing care workers’ representation, social dialogue and collective bargaining are also important components of an effective policy framework on the care economy. Such investments in the care economy will help relieve the care burden, generate decent employment and increase the labour force participation rates of women, which in turn will increase the resilience and long-term growth of economies. In the context of rapid population aging in the region, this would contribute greatly to strengthening of the labour force.

ESCAP Social Development Division (SDD) is implementing the project “Advancing gender equality through recognizing, reducing and redistributing unpaid care work of women and girls in Asia and the Pacific” under the China-ESCAP Cooperation Programme. The expected project outcome is for Governments in four Asia-Pacific countries (i.e., Cambodia, China, Indonesia and the Philippines) to design and implement policy initiatives at the national level that recognize, reduce and redistribute the unpaid care and domestic work responsibilities of women and girls and promote the enhanced participation of women in the labour force. Such policy initiatives may include the development and scaling up of national investment in care infrastructure, care services and gender-responsive social protection measures. A policy toolkit comprising model frameworks for action on the care economy is being developed to assist Governments, with good practices promoted among Asia-Pacific countries through the ESCAP regional platform.

China has been selected as one of the target countries under this project due to the progressive implementation of gender-responsive and care-sensitive policies, including on care provision in particular (public financing has been increased for care services and maternity leave, labour market regulations have been strengthened and family friendly workplace practices have been promoted). A universal social pension insurance system has also been set up, to ensure the adequate standard of living for China’s rapidly ageing population as well as to relieve the stress of caregivers the majority of whom are female family members. Under the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021–2025) for National Economic and Social Development, China is expected to sustain and further strengthen these relevant policy initiatives in order to address challenges with regard to population ageing and the shrinking labour force and serve for its long-term socioeconomic development goals.

To meet the project objectives, SDD is looking for consultants to: (i) develop a policy advice to design new policy initiatives that strengthen the care economy and reduce the unpaid care burden on women and girls in China through a whole-of-government approach; (ii) provide technical assistance to responsible government entities in China through a national stakeholder workshop with the view to further developing the proposed policy initiatives. Given the broad policy areas that are covered by the care economy, SDD is looking for up to two consultants whose expertise and knowledge base may complement each other in making sure that the policy advice addresses the most relevant and promising policy areas with regard to the care economy in China.

The consultants must have in-depth knowledge of the cultural and policy contexts with regard to gender and the care economy in China, including the latest social and economic trends and latest policy debates as well as policymaking agenda with regard to the care economy, and pre-existing experience working with policy makers in relevant sectors in China.

Qualifications/special skills

Doctoral Degree in gender studies, economics, research and development, public administration, political science, sociology, anthropology, human rights or other relevant fields.
Minimum 10 years of relevant experience in the field of research, gender equality and/or gender mainstreaming and care economy.
Strong practical experience in advising governments and public institutions on issues related to gender equality/mainstreaming, care economy, childcare, ageing and elderly care and social protection.
Strong analytical skills and evidence-based policy advisory experiences in relevant fields.
Familiarity with policy advocacy contexts in China.


Excellent verbal and writing skills in both Chinese and English

No Fee


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