Events

For a full list of General Assembly events, visit: http://www.un.org/en/ga/info/meetings/70schedule.shtml

29 September

UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngucka and Jesús Manuel Gracia Aldaz, Spain’s Secretary of State for International Cooperation and for Ibero-America, signed a Strategic Partnership Framework in New York on 29 September.

Spain and UN Women sign strategic partnership agreement to promote women’s rights and gender equality
UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka and Jesús Manuel Gracia Aldaz, Spain’s Secretary of State for International Cooperation and for Ibero-America, signed a Strategic Partnership Framework in New York on 29 September to strengthen collaboration in promoting women’s rights and gender equality.

Empowering Women in Climate Action
Hosted by UN Women, UNDP and France, the forum will highlighted what the need for the future Paris Agreement will be to contribute to reducing gender inequalities and integrating gender considerations into the climate change agenda. Participants included the French Foreign Minister, UNDP Administrator Helen Clark, and UN Women Deputy Executive Director Yannick Glemarec.

A Fairer Future for All: Fighting Inequalities and Discrimination at the Heart of the 2030 Agenda – High-Level Ministerial Breakfast
This high-level event co-hosted by UN Women, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the Permanent Missions of Finland, Mexico and South Africa, focused on the commitment to ‘leave no one behind’ and discussed ways to remove inequalities and discrimination both within and between states as the central defining feature of the new agenda. Speakers included E. Lenita Toivakka, Minister for International Development and Foreign Trade, Finland; Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights; Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director, UN Women; and Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director, Oxfam International. The dialogue was moderated by Craig Mokhiber, Chief of Development, Economic and Social Issues Branch, UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Women Deliver: Road to Copenhagen 2016: Making SDGs Matter Most for Women and Girls
UN Women, the Danish Mission to the United Nations and Women Deliver along with 100-150 decision-makers from government and CSOs came together to promote a gendered perspective on the implementation of the SDGs. Speakers included H.R.H. Crown Princess Mary of Denmark; Mr. Kristian Jensen, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Denmark; Nana Oye Lithur, Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection of Ghana; Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN Women; Catherine Nyambura, Women Deliver Young Leader from Kenya; Katja Iversen and Jill Sheffield, Women Deliver. See flyer for more details.

27 September

World leaders convene at the United Nations on 27 September 2015 for the “Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment: A Commitment to Action” to personally commit to ending discrimination against women by 2030 and announce concrete and measurable actions to kick-start rapid change in their countries. Left to right: UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka (facilitator), UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (co-chair) and President of  the  People's  Republic  of  China Xi  Jinping (co-chair). (Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown.)

Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment: A Commitment to Action
UN Women and the People’s Republic of China co-hosted a landmark event in conjunction with the UN Summit on the post-2015 development framework and as part of the 20th Anniversary commemoration of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. At the high-level “Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment: A Commitment to Action” event on 27 September, over 70 world leaders made concrete commitments and firm pledges to overcome gender equality gaps. This is the first time commitments to women and girls were made at the level of Heads of States and Government, at the UN. His Excellency Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China, and Ban Ki-moon, UN Nations Secretary-General, gave the opening remarks and co-chaired parts of the event. The Presidents of Mexico, and Kenya—as the hosts of two previous World Conferences on Women—and the President of the 70th session of the General Assembly contributed to co-chairing the remainder of the event. Along with top leaders, the meeting was attended by representatives of multilateral organizations, civil society, private sector and youth groups.

To monitor global leaders’ commitments, civil society representatives gather on 27 September 2015 at the “Civil Society Watch: Governments’ Commitments to Action: A Civil Society Parallel Event to the UN Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment.” Photo: UN Women/Nuria Felipe Soria.

Civil Society Watch: Governments’ Commitments to Action: A Civil Society Parallel Event to the UN Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment
Co-sponsored by the NGO Committee on the Status of Women/NY and Planned Parenthood Federation of America in partnership with Baha’i International Community, Center for Women’s Global Leadership and Post-2015 Women’s Coalition, and supported by UN Women, civil society stakeholders gathered to monitor global leaders’ commitments to advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment and map an Accountability Score Board at the “Innovative Ideas Marketplace”.  For more information, see flyer.

26 September

Group photo of participants at UN Women's Business and Philanthropy Leaders’ Forum on 26 September, in New York. Photo: Ryan Brown

Business and Philanthropy Leaders’ Forum — Commitments to “Step It Up” for Gender Equality
On the eve of the Global Leaders’ Meeting on Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment - a Commitment to Action on 27 September, UN Women with the Alibaba Group and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation co-hosted a forum focused on closing the gender investment gap through transformational financing. Opening remarks were provided by Jack Yun MA, Executive Chairman, Alibaba Group and Melinda Gates, Co-Chair and Trustee, Gates Foundation, as well as Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Women Executive Director. Leading business and philanthropy leaders including Paul Polman, CEO, Unilever, Vandana Sikka of Infosys, and many others attended the meeting. Concrete commitments to bridge the gender financing gap, which includes that of UN Women, were announced at the event. 

Using Inclusive Partnerships to Deliver on the SDGs: The Role of Gender-Responsive Budgeting
Co-chairs of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation — Mexico, Malawi and the Netherlands — hosted this event, along with UN Women which was an interactive discussion on lesson learned during country-level application of gender-responsive budgeting.

25 September

Transforming Economies: Empowering Women and Girls Special Event
Co-hosted by the UK Government and UN Women, led by Justine Greening, MP and UK Secretary of State for International Development and Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN Women, this event secured concrete commitments for transforming women and girls’ economic opportunities under the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. A Call to Action was endorsed to ensure measurable results and impact by 2030. The invitation to submit a commitment is open to all – individuals, civil society organizations, business and governments on www.empowerwomen.org/SDG

The evening’s discussion was moderated by Nicholas Kristof, New York Times columnist and author of Half the Sky. The event was organized in collaboration with CARE International and other partners, including Vital Voices, Business for Social Responsibility and others.

24 September

Civil Society Thought Leaders’ Meeting
In the lead up to the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and to mark the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Platform for Action, UN Women convened a series of consultations at the global, regional and national levels that have facilitated discussions on accelerating progress on gender equality. As part of this series of consultations, and ahead of the Global Leaders Meeting on 27th September, UN Women convened a meeting of about 50 civil society thought leaders from all over the world to develop a road map to accelerate the results for substantive gender equality. Discussions focused on priorities and strategies for implementation of the SDGs on the ground, and ensuring accountability by governments on their gender equality obligations. Opening remarks were provided by Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Women Executive Director. Leading civil society leaders including Charlotte Bunch, Musimbi Kanyoro, Tarcila Rivera Zea and Bineta Diop, among others, participated in the meeting. Perspectives from the forum and its commitments were shared at the Head of State Global Leaders’ Meeting on 27 September by the Executive Director of UN Women and civil society speakers at the Global Leaders' Meeting.

Launch of new UN report on Cyberviolence against Women and Girls
Just ahead of the SDG Summit and 12th meeting of the UN Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development the Commission’s Working Group on Gender, co-chaired by Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Women Executive Director and Helen Clark, Administrator, UNDP, launched an important new report entitled: Cyber Violence Against Women & Girls: A Worldwide Wake-Up Call. The event also featured guest speakers including Irina Bokova, Director-General, UNESCO; Doreen Bogdan of ITU; Baroness Beeban Kidron, U.K. filmmaker and director of the film ‘In Real Life’ about teen experiences online; along with cyber violence survivors Anita Sarkeesian and Zoe Quinn; Madeline di Nonno, CEO of the Geena Davis Institute for Gender & Media, and Roberta Cocco of Microsoft Europe.

22 September

Commonwealth Secretariat and UN Women sign new MoU to advance gender equality and women’s empowerment
UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngucka and Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma signed a Memorandum of Understanding in New York on 22 September to strengthen collaboration in advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment. The MoU builds on existing cooperation between the two organizations and will help to achieve the common goal of realizing the rights of women and girls as critical preconditions for effective and sustainable development.