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This publication explores the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on women’s economic empowerment in the tourism sector which has disproportionately affected women due to pre-existing gender inequalities and women’s predominance in the sector’s workforce. The document examines emerging research and data, identifies innovative responses across regions, and makes concrete recommendations for action to ensure that women’s economic empowerment is central to the COVID-19 response and recovery in the tourism sector.
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In 2021, the Independent Evaluation Service condcuted the corporate evaluation on UN Women’s policy advaocy work. The evaluation team assessed the relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, and coherence of UN Women’s policy advocacy work to deliver high-impact and transformative results in line with the UN Women Strategic Plan 2018–2021. Findings from this evaluation are expected to contribute to strategic decision-making, organizational learning and accountability, and implementation of the UN Women Strategic Plan 2022–2025.
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This brief analyses the extent to and ways in which countries in sub-Saharan Africa have made extensive use of social protection instruments to confront the economic and social fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. Drawing on a unique data set of national social protection strategies from 30 countries in the region, it finds that while a significant number of strategies acknowledge gendered risks and vulnerabilities, few include specific actions to address them. The brief concludes with a set of recommendations.
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UN Women’s tenth anniversary publication, “A decade of daring”, celebrates the milestones of the organization’s first 10 years.
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This study highlights the laws and policies in G7 countries that impact the lives of women. It showcases the progress of 350 companies (largest 50 companies in each G7 country) against Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs) indicators, underscoring the importance of WEPs as a framework in providing concrete steps to advance women’s economic empowerment in the workplace, marketplace, and community.
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This paper argues for investing in free universal high quality childcare services in order to reduce gender inequality in earnings and employment. It estimates the employment-generating and fiscal effects of investing in free universal childcare in Côte d'Ivoire, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, and the United Republic of Tanzania. The study estimates the total costs of investing in childcare services to increase the enrollment (coverage) rate for children in formal childcare services to different target levels.
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This paper uses harmonized collections of national labor force datasets to compare the size and shape of the paid care sector around the globe. The paper then explores the relationship between the size of the care sector and various measures of need for care, finding very little evidence of relationship. Finally, the paper explores wages and working conditions for paid care workers in a subset of countries for which data is available.
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UN Women has emerged as a global leader in the promotion of the care economy, and this work has highlighted the urgent need to invest in childcare facilities through private and public partnerships to reduce women’s unpaid care work and to allow women to take an active role in the economy. This policy tool provides a blueprint for making a policy case for sustained investment in the care economy.

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Women’s full and equal participation in all decision-making processes is necessary to achieve gender equality and drive progress towards sustainable development. A follow up to Shaping the international agenda publication (2017), this publication is a useful tool to raise awareness and promote gender parity in intergovernmental bodies and processes.
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This report explores some key indicators of women’s economic empowerment in labour markets and women’s political participation and economic leadership in the Indian Ocean Rim region through three dimensions: resources, agency, and achievements. It highlights good practices, case studies, and challenges and opportunities for investments and initiatives, and provides key recommendations for Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Member States and other stakeholders to realize women’s economic empowerment in the region.
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This report is a first-of-its-kind initiative of the United Nations Inter-Agency Network on Women and Gender Equality (IANWGE), the single largest network of gender focal points in the UN system. It presents a critical stocktaking of 51 UN entities’ support to the implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in 2014–2019.
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The digital revolution brings immense potential to improve social and economic outcomes for women. Yet, it also poses the risk of perpetuating existing patterns of gender inequality. This report begins by outlining a conceptual framework for understanding the mutual shaping relationship between gender and technology. It then focuses on three areas to identify opportunities and risks in the digital revolution: education, work, and social/welfare services.
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The present report, submitted pursuant to UN General Assembly resolution 73/146, provides information on measures taken by Member States and activities carried out within the United Nations system to eliminate trafficking in women and girls. The report focuses on efforts to address the gender dimensions of trafficking, with a special focus on the economic drivers and consequences of trafficking, and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on trafficking of women and girls.
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Pursuant to UN General Assembly resolution 73/149 on intensifying global efforts for the elimination of female genital mutilation, the present report provides information on the prevalence of the practice worldwide and its impact on women and girls, with reference to the most recent data and evidence.
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The present report, submitted pursuant to General Assembly resolution 73/148, provides information on measures taken by Member States and activities carried out within the United Nations system to eliminate violence against women and girls. The report emphasizes the urgency of efforts to eliminate violence against women in the context of COVID-19 as well as reporting on advances in eliminating sexual harassment. The report includes conclusions and specific recommendations for future action.
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This brief presents emerging evidence on the impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic on the care economy. It highlights key measures needed to address the increase in unpaid care work as a result of the pandemic, ensure adequate compensation and decent working conditions for paid care workers, and enable the participation of paid and unpaid caregivers in the policy decisions that affect them.
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Across the world, the care of children continues to be primarily provided by women and girls, and such a burden constrains their ability to participate equally in employment and social and political life, and to earn an income commensurate with that of men. The goal of this research is to measure and value women’s contribution to the economy through their unpaid care and domestic work responsibilities in the Republic of Serbia.
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This report tells UN Women’s story over the period 2019–2020. It shares how we and our many partners are striding forward to realize a better world for women and girls—one of equality and empowerment. Looking forward, we will draw on our full resources and experiences in protecting and advancing the rights of all women and girls. That is what we do and who we are, as a leader, mobilizer, convenor, provider of programmes, and partner for change.
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In this paper, we propose a conceptual framework to discuss two interrelated realms: backsliding on gender equality policies and the emerging political space for feminist responses to this backsliding. We illustrate our framework with empirical observations from three Central and Eastern European countries: Croatia, Hungary, and Poland. We aim to contribute to an understanding of the gendered aspects of de-democratization and the functioning of illiberal democracies.
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How are women’s employment outcomes shaped by domestic and caregiving responsibilities? Drawing on a global dataset and new indicators developed by UN Women and the International Labour Organization, this paper provides insights into the distribution of domestic and caregiving responsibilities within various types of households—insights that are critical at this juncture when policies and programmes are being designed to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic’s economic fallout.