• Congratulations UNU-GEST Class of 2018!

    UNU-GEST celebrates the graduation of twenty-three fellows with a post-graduate diploma in international gender studies more


  • NORA 2019 Conference

    Gender and feminist researchers are invited to participate in the NORA 2019 Conference on critical feminist cross-disciplinary research and activities held at the University of Iceland, 22-24 May 2019. NORA 2019 Conference

  • Field Trip to the Southeast of Iceland

    As part of the module "Gender and Environment" the fellows traveled to the Southeast of Iceland, learning about the relationship between gender and climate change more

  • Calling for action towards SDG#5

    To celebrate International Women's Day 2018, the fellows and staff of UNU-GEST call for a variety of actions for gender equality and achieving the SDGs by 2030 more

  • UNU’s Work on the SDGs

    On 22 January, UNU launched its Sustainable Development Explorer, a new campaign highlighting UNU’s work to support the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) more

Gender news from around the world

  • 'They see no shame': 'honour' killing video shows plight of Syrian women
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 12.11.2018
    Footage of a young Syrian woman's execution by her brother was greeted with widespread horror. Yet such violence is all too common ? and as a member of the Free Syrian Army, with its own police and courts, the man is untouchableKalashnikov in hand, the man looks into the camera. He stands over a terrified girl, who is pleading for her life."Make sure we can see both your faces," a voice orders. Continue reading...
  • Woman who bore rapist's baby faces 20 years in El Salvador jail
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 12.11.2018
    Imelda Cortez, 20, faces trial in country where abortion is illegal under all circumstancesA rape victim is facing 20 years in jail charged with attempted murder, after she gave birth to her abuser's baby in a latrine in El Salvador.In a case that highlights the rigidity of the country's abortion laws, Imelda Cortez, 20, from an impoverished rural family in San Miguel, has been in custody since April 2017 after giving birth to a baby girl fathered by her abusive elderly stepfather. Continue reading...
  • The world must not be too scared to talk about teenagers having sex
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 09.11.2018
    My university friend in Nigeria died trying to end an unwanted pregnancy herself. Her story highlights a larger issueIn my first year at university in Nigeria, my roommate Kathy found out she had become pregnant by accident. She was 18, a promising student with her whole life ahead of her. But she wasn't ready to become a mum and feared her family's reaction. She tried to end the pregnancy herself ? and lost her life in the process.Eight years later, I still replay one conversation I had with Kathy, where I asked if she and her boyfriend were using birth control. She replied: "No. I don't even know where I'd get it." Continue reading...
  • 'I did it for every single girl': the first Afghan woman to scale Mount Noshaq
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 09.11.2018
    Conquering Afghanistan's highest peak was once unthinkable for Hanifa Yousoufi. Then she joined a climbing group, braving frostbite and the Taliban to strike a blow for gender equalityIn a quiet corner of Kabul, a dozen young women welcome their friend back from the summit of Afghanistan's highest mountain. Like many Afghan women, Hanifa Yousoufi had always been made to believe, growing up, that she shouldn't go to school or play sport. Yet the 24-year-old has become the first Afghan woman to climb Mount Noshaq.The young women gathered here are among the 70-strong cohort meeting six days a week to learn the art of climbing, something many never imagined they would have a chance to do. Continue reading...
  • Samsung should try imagining a world where big firms respect workers
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 08.11.2018
    Two years after migrants working for global electronics firms in Malaysia complained of labour abuses, change seems slowThink of your favourite gadgets and appliances, and it's likely some of them started life in a rundown, mosquito-infested dormitory complex an hour's drive from Malaysia's capital, Kuala Lumpur.In each block there is a makeshift kitchen, a small, grubby toilet and three rooms crowded with bunk beds. There is no air conditioning to break the oppressively humid air. Outside, burning rubbish sends acrid fumes through the labour camp, which is strewn with broken furniture and an abandoned vehicle. Continue reading...
  • FGM rates in east Africa drop from 71% to 8% in 20 years, study shows
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 07.11.2018
    Analysis in BMJ Global Health suggests dramatic decline in number of girls undergoing the practice, yet experts advise caution over the figuresThe number of girls undergoing female genital mutilation has fallen dramatically in east Africa over the past two decades, according to a study published in BMJ Global Health.The study, which looked at rates of FGM among girls aged 14 and under, suggests that prevalence in east Africa has dropped from 71.4% in 1995, to 8% in 2016. Continue reading...
  • 'There is no need for women to work': Afghan TV show takes on patriarchy ' Ruchi Kumar
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 31.10.2018
    Inspired by hit US series Ugly Betty, Roya follows the fortunes of a 20-year-old, single, educated woman and her challenges joining the workforce in post-Taliban KabulRoya wants to take a job in a local media company, but her father and brother aren't keen. "What is the need for a young girl to work outside?" asks her father, seated on a toushak, the traditional Afghan low-seating cushions, sipping the customary post-dinner chai. Her brother chimes in with an answer. "There is no need for women to work," he says.And so begins the pilot episode of a series that is set to air on prime-time Afghan television in November. Continue reading...
  • UK 'exaggerated number of lives saved' by maternal health aid project
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 30.10.2018
    Watchdog says many more deaths could have been prevented given level of investment in Department for International Development programmesThe UK government has been criticised by an aid watchdog for exaggerating the number of women's lives it saved through its maternal health programmes.A review, published by the Independent Commission for Aid Impact (Icai) on Tuesday, also said the number of lives saved "were significantly below what they could have been, given the level of investment". Continue reading...
  • Loan sharks are circling for poor Indian debtors failed by microfinance ' Navjot Sangwan
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 29.10.2018
    A growing body of research suggests that micro-credit, the darling of international development, costs borrowers dearIt's still a week or so until Diwali, but the market in Thol, a village in northern India, is already bustling with shoppers perusing cheap Chinese-made electronics, sweets, presents and decorations."Diwali shopping season seems to start earlier every year," says Rashmi, 36, who opened a small sweet shop last year with a loan from a local microfinance institution that is repayable in weekly instalments. A recent increase of her existing loan allowed her stock up ahead of Diwali. Continue reading...
  • Women in Palestine face violence and political exclusion, campaigner tells UN
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 26.10.2018
    First female Palestinian activist to address UN security council speaks out over political marginalisation and domestic abuseWomen are being shut out of Palestinian politics and excluded from peace talks, according to Randa Siniora, the first female Palestinian campaigner to address the UN security council.Speaking at the UN on Thursday, she said that while women in the occupied territories often face the greatest violence, they are overlooked in the country's political and humanitarian responses. Continue reading...
  • Capital offence: tackling harassment on public transport in Bogotá ? podcast
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 24.10.2018
    In Colombia's capital, many women are reliant on buses. Ángela Anzola and the city's mayor want transport designed by men to be safer for womenÁngela Anzola was a child when her family went abroad because Bogotá was too unsafe. After studying in the UK, she returned to Colombia and worked as high counsellor for victims of the country's armed conflict. Research has found that many Latin American women feel insecure on public transport and, in her new post as Bogotá's secretary for women and gender equality, Anzola has been finding ways to ensure women get around the city safelyResearch via the FIA foundation: Safe and Sound (international) Ella se mueve segura (Latin America) Continue reading...
  • 'I'm more valued than before': women in Tajikistan get a new lease of life ? in pictures
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 19.10.2018
    Physical and sexual violence against women is commonplace in Tajikistan, but a project designed to address the issue has produced remarkable results? All photographs by Anisa Sabiri for the Guardian? The scheme ending abuse against women in Tajikistan Continue reading...
  • 'It's a miracle': the scheme ending abuse against women in Tajikistan
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 19.10.2018
    For 22 years, Rano Mahmurodova was violently abused by her husband. A groundbreaking new project changed everything? Women in Tajikistan get a new lease of life ? in picturesThe change in behaviour of Rano Mahmurodova's husband was nothing short of a "miracle".Married at 18, the 42-year-old had spent more than two decades being physically and verbally assaulted by her husband, who was fuelled by drink, drugs and unemployment. Continue reading...
  • 'Inequality is a poison': campaigning for Muslim women's rights ? podcast
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 17.10.2018
    Shahin Ashraf's experience growing up as a British Muslim has led to a life campaigning for gender equality around the worldShahin Ashraf's humanitarian work has taken her from Bosnia to Afghanistan, where she helped a woman escape forced marriage. Ashraf, who was awarded an MBE in 2015 for her services to interfaith and community cohesion, is a global advocacy advisor for Islamic Relief. She speaks to Lucy Lamble about her own experience of gender inequality, which influenced her campaign work for Muslim women's rights in traditionally conservative societies. Continue reading...
  • Strict parents and social stigma limit mobile use for girls in poor countries
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 15.10.2018
    Online safety and digital literacy compromised by challenges teenage girls face in accessing mobile technology, finds studyStrict parenting and social disapproval are among factors that make teenage girls in developing countries significantly less likely than boys to own a mobile phone, researchers have found.Limited access to mobile technology also means girls are sharing phones in secret, leaving them more vulnerable to the harmful effects of social media because of their relative inexperience online, according to a survey by Girl Effect and the Vodafone Foundation. Continue reading...
  • Paloma Faith: 'Theresa May is criticised all the time because she's a woman'
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 11.10.2018
    Singer campaigning for gender equality contrasts ridicule of May's dancing with positive reaction to Tony Blair's taste for rock musicPaloma Faith has hit out at the widespread mockery of Theresa May's dance moves, saying the prime minister is unfairly criticised because of her gender.The British musician, a vocal feminist who is spearheading a campaign for global gender equality launched on the eve of the International Day of the Girl on Thursday, said: "Why shouldn't Theresa May dance? I felt bad for her. I'm worried about her policies but I'm not worried about her dancing." Continue reading...
  • 'It's for my daughter's memory': the Indian village where every girl's life is celebrated
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 11.10.2018
    Grief-stricken after his daughter's death, the chief of Piplantri village declared that every newborn girl would have a tree planted in her honour. In the process, he sowed the seeds of cultural, environmental and political revolutionShyam Sunder Paliwal knows his way through the trees. Pushing through low branches, he reaches a shady copse where a profusion of different varieties grow. Every evening, he comes here on his motorbike to see one tree in particular, a burflower ? kadam in Hindi ? that symbolises sublime love. In the silence of the copse, he wraps both arms tightly around the slender trunk and rests his head against it, eyes closed. "This is my daughter's," he says.Kiran, Paliwal's 16-year-old daughter, died in 2006 ? a tragedy he marked by planting the burflower tree. He went on to channel his grief into a mission. "She meant so much to me. How could parents kill a baby girl in the womb?" Continue reading...
  • 'I was given photos of the foetus': abortion stigma lingers in pioneering Uruguay ' Elizabeth Sulis Kim
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 10.10.2018
    The country has much to celebrate as Latin America's most progressive on reproductive rights, but the process of getting a termination can still be long and stressfulJuana Fernandez* was a university student and in the first few months of a new relationship when she discovered she was pregnant.She was not ready to become a mother in her early 20s, so Fernandez, from Montevideo, decided to have an abortion. At that time, abortion was illegal in Uruguay so she was forced to undergo a clandestine termination. It was a stressful time. Continue reading...
  • How to grapple with soaring world population? An answer from Botswana
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 10.10.2018
    Botswana has one of the fastest falling fertility rates. As global population expands, there are lessons to be learned At the end of a dusty road in the southern African hinterland sits a small concrete building with an orange door. It is a structure so modest and remote that it is hard to believe it could hold lessons for addressing one of the world's biggest challenges.The unit is the medical hub for Gasita, a village of 2,000 people in the south of Botswana. Inside one of the rooms, pharmaceutical supplies are neatly stashed on shelves while a photograph of the country's president, Mokgweetsi Masisi, is propped up on a counter next to a window that is ajar, letting in a warm breeze. Continue reading...
  • Afghan women still jailed alongside murderers for 'failing' virginity test ' Fariba Housaini
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 09.10.2018
    Despite a public health policy outlawing the test, women continue to be subjected to this degrading ordeal, which can lead to arrest and imprisonmentSeven months ago, 18-year-old Bahara* was imprisoned for failing a test that she should never have had to undergo.Bahara had run away from home to meet a man she had been in a relationship with. They had never met, but were in contact through calls and messages. That night, when they met for the first time, he raped her. But when she reported the rape to the police, instead of support, she was taken to hospital to undergo a virginity test ? a practice that was banned in Afghanistan in 2016. Continue reading...
  • Press release: Luminaries, activists and artistes come together to spotlight life-changing interventions on ending the pandemic of violence against women and girls
    UN Women – News 17.11.2016
    Press release: Luminaries, activists and artistes come together to spotlight life-changing interventions on ending the pandemic of violence against women and girls. UN Women Goodwill Ambassador Nicole Kidman co-hosts star-studded gala to mark 20 years of grant-making through UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women.
  • Faces of climate change ― the gender perspective

    Faces of climate change ― the gender perspective

    In recent years, farmers all over Uganda have experienced changes in climate. Extreme weather such as heavy rains, flooding, drought, landslides and unreliable seasons affect the livelihoods of the many families who live off the land. The changing conditions impact men and women differently and challenge the way they work together. Could revisiting the traditional gender roles be a part of the solution?

  • What is the United Nations University all about?

    What is the United Nations University all about?

    United Nations University – Agile and Adept: Marking the 40th anniversary of the establishment of the United Nations University in Japan, this video animation explains how the UNU is uniquely organized as an agile and adept think tank composed of a network of highly specialized institutes distributed across the globe.

  • Vigdís Finnbogadóttir patron of the UNU-GEST

    Vigdís Finnbogadóttir patron of the UNU-GEST

    Ms. Vigdís Finnbogadóttir, the former President of Iceland, was the first woman to be democratically elected President in the world. Women's rights, cultural diversity, the promotion of world peace and transnational dialogues have been running themes in Ms. Vigdís Finnbogadóttir's work. She has also been an important advocate of equality and the empowerment of women.