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Gender discrimination inhibits global efforts to tackle the climate crisis, says new SIGI report

18/07/2023 - Although many countries around the world have stepped up their efforts to tackle hidden and deep-rooted barriers to women’s empowerment over the last few years, major environmental, economic, and social challenges threaten to reverse the trend.


The Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) 2023 Global Report: Gender Equality in Times of Crisis uncovers gender-based discrimination in social institutions across 179 countries.


Between 2019 and 2023, an increasing number of countries have addressed discriminatory social institutions, notably through legal reforms aimed at breaking harmful patterns. Encouragingly, developing countries are bridging the gap with the developed countries. In 2023, 45% of the countries which exhibit very low levels of discrimination in social institutions are non-OECD countries. The report was launched today on the sidelines of Women Deliver 2023 Conference in Kigali, Rwanda, building on the SIGI 2023 dataset released at the sixty-seventh session of the United Nation’s Commission on the Status of Women in March.


With only seven years to go before the 2030 deadline of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), progress towards gender equality remains fragile, too slow and heterogeneous. Globally, 40% of women live in countries where discrimination is high or very high. For example, deep-rooted discrimination within social institutions has led to enormous disparities in the division of power between men and women in the workplace. And while 93 countries have established political gender quotas at national level, there are still too few women in high-level jobs and political leadership positions. Women head-up only 15% of firms worldwide and hold only 25% of management positions.


It is in the family sphere that discriminations remain the highest. For instance, women continue to dedicate 2.6 times more hours on unpaid care and domestic work than men do. Likewise, in 2021, only 57% of women made their own decisions regarding sexual relations, contraceptive use and reproductive healthcare.



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