Innovation and technology

young women in Guatemala use a computer. Photo: UN Trust Fund/Phil Borges
Photo: UN Trust Fund/Phil Borges

The achievement of the ambitious Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), notably gender equality and women’s empowerment, requires transformative shifts, integrated approaches, and new solutions. Based on current trajectories, existing interventions will not suffice to achieve a Planet 50-50 by 2030. Innovative approaches that disrupt “business as usual” are central to delivering the SDGs for all. 

Innovation and technology provide unprecedented opportunities to break trends and reach those who are the most likely to be left behind. This is why UN Women has prioritized innovation technology as one of the “drivers of change” within its new draft Strategic Plan, 2018 – 2021. With generous support from the Government of Denmark, UN Women focuses on developing markets for innovations that advance gender equality; integrating gender issues within innovation; promoting women as innovators and entrepreneurs; and investing directly in technology-driven innovative solutions that meet the needs of women and girls.

For UN Women, partnerships are key to accelerate industry-wide change and to remove the barriers to the advancement of women and girls in innovation, technology and entrepreneurship. UN Women’s innovation strategy focuses on:

  • Building market awareness, investment and industry-wide actions to grow an innovation market that advances gender equality and empowerment of women and girls. UN Women is launching a Global Innovation Coalition for Change to drive industry-wide action;
  • Developing tools and methodologies with industry partners to take a gender-responsive approach to innovation;
  • Promoting women as innovators and entrepreneurs; and
  • Investing in innovations and technologies that meet the needs of women.

For more information on UN Women’s innovation and technology projects, see the “Innovation for gender equality” brochure.

Featured publication
  • Innovation for gender equality - cover image

    Innovation for gender equality
    This brochure showcases some of UN Women’s thoughts and practices around innovation that could accelerate gender equality and women’s empowerment. The examples range from pilot programmes with marginalized beneficiaries to partnerships with start-ups; from frontier technologies to non-tech interventions that challenge mindsets; and from procedural improvements to capacity-building. More