Project final report

COVID-19 gendered risks, impact & response in the Indo-Pacific: Rapid research and policy guidance - Final Report

Date released
21 June 2023
Publication Code

Sara E Davies, Robin E Roberts


This project aimed to develop an evidence-based approach that identified the specific risk of economic hardship and food insecurity that women experienced during the first and second years of the COVID-19 pandemic in Myanmar, the Philippines, and Papua New Guinea. Within this goal, the objectives were to:

  • identify and understand the specific gendered impacts of COVID-19 response on food security and socio-economic outcomes for women across three countries and,
  • utilise these insights to outline opportunities and design approaches that will begin to mitigate the harm caused by the COVID-19 disruption at the individual, household, and community levels.

There are 3 main sections to this report:

  1. Background on the method and research design.
  2. A summary of the key findings across the three countries illustrates how rapidly women experienced food and income insecurity at the start of the crisis, sometimes before intense COVID-19 waves reached their communities.
  3. The research and impact lessons, and the recommendations to address livelihood improvements for women in a post-pandemic landscape.

The results reveal the experiences of resilience and vulnerability among neighbours in the Indo-Pacific are deeply interconnected. Most countries, if not all were unprepared, and communities and economies were shut down. Post-pandemic life will be different for many communities and individuals. Recommendations to inform ACIAR strategic discussions for research development activities have common ground across our partner countries.

The findings and recommendations from this project will contribute to a broader development outcome by informing ACIAR in the design of longer-term research and development programs to reduce poverty and improve the livelihoods of many in the Indo-Pacific region.

View the project page