1. Methodology

This topic guide is based on a review of studies of gender norms, queerness, LGBTQI people’s experiences, youth, and development. The author conducted searches for literature in English on these topics, using keywords including ‘norms’, ‘norm change’, ‘transgression’, ‘gender’, ‘LGBT’, ‘queer’, ‘sexuality’, ‘youth’ and ‘heteronormativity’. The author also reviewed resource lists collated by Eldis and the Institute of Development Studies (IDS). As there is a dearth of literature looking specifically at the nexus of norm change around sexuality and gender identity and how they affect LGBTQI people in developing countries, we have drawn evidence from a variety of contexts and age groups, in order to present a holistic viewpoint of what might work for norm change.  

On some topics, evidence is weak or based on a single study. Much of the evidence on LGBTQI youth comes from the USA or other Northern countries, making it difficult to draw conclusions on what might be relevant for other, lower-income developing countries. ‘Queer’ as a term to describe sexuality is not commonly used outside the global North, and so practices which might be described as queer may not be locally known or written about in this way. This guide takes a broad understanding of terms and includes evidence on a variety of non-heterosexual, non-straight and non-cisgender practices and identities. 

Browne, E., 2019, Gender norms, LGBTQI issues and development: a topic guide, ALIGN, London UK