GOAL 5: Gender Equality

Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls


Gender equality is not only a fundamental human right, but a necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world.

There has been progress over the last decades: More girls are going to school, fewer girls are forced into early marriage, more women are serving in parliament and positions of leadership, and laws are being reformed to advance gender equality.

Despite these gains, many challenges remain: discriminatory laws and social norms remain pervasive, women continue to be underrepresented at all levels of political leadership, and 1 in 5 women and girls between the ages of 15 and 49 report experiencing physical or sexual violence by an intimate partner within a 12-month period.

The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic could reverse the limited progress that has been made on gender equality and women’s rights.  The coronavirus outbreak exacerbates existing inequalities for women and girls across every sphere – from health and the economy, to security and social protection.

Women play a disproportionate role in responding to the virus, including as frontline healthcare workers and carers at home. Women’s unpaid care work has increased significantly as a result of school closures and the increased needs of older people. Women are also harder hit by the economic impacts of COVID-19, as they disproportionately work in insecure labour markets. Nearly 60 per cent of women work in the informal economy, which puts them at greater risk of falling into poverty.

The pandemic has also led to a steep increase in violence against women and girls. With lockdown measures in place, many women are trapped at home with their abusers, struggling to access services that are suffering from cuts and restrictions. Emerging data shows that, since the outbreak of the pandemic, violence against women and girls – and particularly domestic violence – has intensified.

UN AI Actions

International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)
International Labour Organization (ILO)
United Nations Women (UNWomen)
United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA)
United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE)
United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)
United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)


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5 May 2020
18:00 - 19:30 CEST, Geneva
Andy Coravos (Elektra Labs), Caitlin Kraft Buchman (Women@TheTable), Ida Tin (Clue)...
23 June 2020
17:00 - 18:00 CEST, Geneva
Aylin Caliskan (The George Washington University), Caitlin Kraft Buchman (Women@TheTable), Francesca Rossi (IBM T.J. Watson Research Lab)...
16 July 2020
17:30 - 18:15 CEST, Geneva
Amir Banifatemi (XPRIZE), Ania Calderon (Open Data Charter), Jaimie Boyd (Government of British Columbia)...
22 - 24 September 2020
19:00 - 20:30 CEST, Geneva
Aylin Caliskan (The George Washington University), Caitlin Kraft Buchman (Women@TheTable), Francesca Rossi (IBM T.J. Watson Research Lab)...
25 May 2021
15:00 - 16:00 CEST, Geneva
Aki Enkenberg (Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland), Alisha Arora (The HopeSisters), Belén Guede (STEM Academy)...
6 December 2021
15:00 - 16:00 CET, Geneva
Enzo Ferrante (Argentina's National Research Council (CONICET))
24 May 2022
16:00 - 17:30 CEST, Geneva | 10:00-11:30 EDT, New York | 7:00-8:30 PT, California
Beth Rudden (IBM Consulting), Christina Montgomery (IBM), Francesca Rossi (IBM T.J. Watson Research Lab)...
26 May 2022
14:00 - 16:30 CEST, Geneva | 08:00-10:30 EDT, New York | 20:00-22:30 CST, Beijing
Jennifer Woodard (Insikt Intelligence), Kepeng Li (Tencent), Lia DiBello (Applied Cognitive Sciences Labs Inc.)...
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