Journal Article

Addressing gender dynamics and engaging men in HIV programs: Lessons learned from Horizons research

In the field of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevention, there has been increasing interest in the role that gender plays in HIV and violence risk, and in successfully engaging men in the response. This article highlights findings from more than 10 studies in Asia, Africa, and Latin America—conducted from 1997 through 2007 as part of the Horizons program—that have contributed to understanding the relationship between gender and men’s behaviors, developing useful measurement tools for gender norms, and designing and evaluating the impact of gender-focused program strategies. Studies showed significant associations between support for inequitable norms and risk, such as more partner violence and less condom use. Programmatic lessons learned ranged from insights into appropriate media messages, to strategies to engage men in critically reflecting upon gender inequality, to the qualities of successful program facilitators. The portfolio of work reveals the potential and importance of directly addressing gender dynamics in HIV- and violence-prevention programs for both men and women.