How to calculate the cost to business of gender based violence in Papua New Guinea

Research reports and studies
April 2014
Carolin Williams
Gender-based violence (GBV) has been described as the most common human rights violation that both reflects and reinforces inequalities between women and men. Until recently there has been little systematic attention to the economic costs of GBV. Costing studies have largely been limited to developed economies, where the availability of data across different cost categories is generally more robust. In developing countries, estimating the economic costs of GBV, particularly to business, is a new research area gaining rapid attention.

There is wide recognition of GBV in PNG as not only a humanitarian issue but also a core business issue affecting staff and labour productivity. Being able to calculate the cost of GBV to business, thus highlighting the potential savings from investing either in response mechanisms or in its prevention, is an important first step in building the business case for intervention.This brief overview of existing approaches and methodologies to estimate the cost of GBV is intended to inform the development of a costing framework of GBV to business in PNG.

Based on this kind of an initial costing exercise, either an operational framework for companies in PNG could be designed though which companies themselves could calculate the costs of GBV to their business. This framework could also be implemented across companies to develop an aggregate estimate of the likely cost of GBV to business, potentially by sector and/or location. In addition, it may be possible to design a simple tool, based on a representative costing exercise, through which companies could then quickly calculate the likely cost to their business of GBV according to the number of employees.