Compared to formal or legal quality, which ensures the same opportunities and access to resources, substantive equality focuses on the actual outcomes and impacts of laws and policies. For example, while men and women might be equal in the eyes of the law, woman might still face certain barriers that may require special temporary measures to rectify this inequality. In this sense, substantive equality goes beyond a purely legal perspective on equality and recognizes that actual lived realities are more complex, and requires governments to tailor legislation to respond to the realities of people’s lives. Substantive equality is a concept taken from the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), where the concept is used to draw attention to the fact that as a result of historic discrimination, women do not start on an equal footing to men.

  • See also:
  • Flower of Participation,Meaningful Youth Participation