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Exploring Gender Perceptions of Nuclear Energy in India


Govindan, Mini ; Ram Mohan, M.P.

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WP 2021-11-06


There are numerous studies that have examined the role of gender on differential perceptions on various aspects of energy, including those related to nuclear plants. Yet, few studies have explored the role of changing perceptions and the interaction of conditional factors in shaping the gendered effects, especially from a developing country. This enquiry is critical for the administrative state to understand targeted policy prescriptions. This paper examines the differences in perceptions and related reactions of both men and women living in the vicinity of Kakrapar Atomic Power Station in the Indian state of Gujarat. Although women’s disproportionate sensitivity to and lower tolerance of risks is embedded in the broad cultural milieu, the presence of the nuclear plant in their vicinity was not perceived as a larger risk than the possible flooding from the nearby dam or losing livelihood opportunities due to dwindling returns from agriculture. This study challenges the gendered binary thinking in nuclear energy domain in terms of engagement and administration of nuclear energy projects.


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