This paper argues for the application of a gender lens at the earliest stage of developing better infrastructure projects, both in terms of development outcomes and risk-adjusted returns for investors. Gender is material throughout the project lifecycle, as it influences long-term stability at both a project level and in a macro-economic context. Therefore, projects that are conceived and designed with a gender lens present reduced risk. The paper highlights the opportunity for blended finance in influencing the markets at the earliest stage of project development.

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