Given the current emphasis on gender mainstreaming, gender equality and empowerment of women in the South we propose an event highlighting the importance of context and lived experience. In particular, the aim is to discuss how to teach and do research on gender issues. The seminar also allows for a dialogue between researchers and practitioners. By allowing for such a discussion across the field of theory and practice we aim to produce new knowledge and insight into how to think about and practice gender mainstreamed development. We will emphasise the experience of men and women and their everyday life concerns as important points of entry for an understanding of how to think and do gender and development. Only when the experiences of women and men in lo cal contexts inform the use of concepts such as gender and empowerment, can there be a potential for insights beyond general assumptions. Highlighting everyday life and context enables a perspective which allows men to come back on the development arena a s something more than a constraining factor for women and their struggle for independence and empowerment. Moreover, understanding gender practices in particular lifeworlds enables us to acknowledge multiple realities. Such a focus underlines the importan ce of comparison in order to avoid generalized labels. In doing so, we also question the underlying western ideal of independence in our efforts to work for gender equality in the South. This seminar will gather national and international scholars, also i ncluding scholars from the South. Our participants will approach the theme from different angels, which is why it is important to bring them together for further discussions and exploration. We refer to the attached preliminary program for names of invi ted speakers. All invited speakers have confirmed their presence. Two panelists (NORAD and Stromme Foundation) are yet to be asked.