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A blog series from ADB's Asian Development Blog offers useful reference to urban planners and transport specialists on how to address violence against women and girls (VAWG) in their efforts to ensure safe roads, cities and neighborhoods in Asia.

The series, written by ADB's Gender Specialist Laurence Levaque, listed down practical entry points for mainstreaming VAWG prevention and response in urban development and urban transport initiatives.

VAWG in Urban Transport

"Transport projects typically do not include VAWG prevention and response, as the objective is usually just to improve the service.  But such projects can actually address women's safety issues through certain investments that will at the same time improve the operational efficiency and sustainability of the transport system," wrote Levaque.

The menu of entry points for urban transport is outlined according to three themes: safe physical environment and design features, prevention and support services, and capacity building.

For example, adequate lighting and investment in security personnel on surveillance platforms are just some of the features that should be included in project design.

Levaque also said that ensuring proper maintenance of transport systems even has an influence on users’ perception of security and degree of acceptance of crime or misconduct.

VAWG in Urban Development

The entry points under urban development come from a broader list, from participatory and evidence-based planning to community mobilization and capacity building.

"Urban development projects can and must help create environments that are friendly and safe for women and girls. In such environments, women and men have equal opportunities to use and enjoy public spaces and urban services," she noted.

You can read Levaques’s full blog articles on integrating VAWG prevention and response in urban development here and in urban transport here.