Office of UN Women’s Executive Coordinator and Spokesperson on Addressing Sexual Harassment and Other Forms of Discrimination

Ms. Purna Sen, Director of UN Women’s Policy Division, moderates the UN Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment event, titled “Accelerating women’s economi empowerment to achieve the 2030 Agenda”, held on 17 July 2017 in the context of the High-Level Political Forum in New York. Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown.
Purna Sen was UN Women’s Executive Coordinator and Spokesperson on Addressing Sexual Harassment and Other Forms of Discrimination between 2018 and 2020. Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown.

Between 2018 and 2020, the Executive Coordinator and Spokesperson on Addressing Sexual Harassment and Other Forms of Discrimination Ms. Purna Sen led UN Women’s work on addressing sexual harassment inside and outside the United Nations. The Office worked to advance the rights of victim-survivors of sexual harassment wherever they were and promoted the cultural change needed to end this form of discrimination.

The Office worked to further the understanding of sexual harassment as a violation of human rights that links with patterns of violence and to identify promising practices towards ending it.

The Office of the Executive Coordinator elaborated and applied a survivor-centred approach across its work by centring women’s experiences and by promoting experience as valuable knowledge that can strengthen policies and practices.

The Executive Coordinator engaged widely outside the United Nations, including with academia, civil society, Member States, IGOs, policymakers, legislators, and the private sector. Internally, she created and convened a task force that continues coordinating and bringing internal expertise to bear on UN Women’s own work against sexual harassment.

In her role of Advisor to the Executive Coordinator, Professor Catharine A. MacKinnon, Elizabeth A. Long Professor of Law at the University of Michigan and James Barr Ames Visiting Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, contributed to the work of this Office including to the publications listed below.

Publications