• Women Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Energy in Africa

    UNU-GEST teams up with Ministry for Foreign Affairs Iceland, UN Environment and UN Women to hold a workshop more

  • Call for nominations

    UNU-GEST invites new nominations of candidates for Post-graduate Diploma in International Gender Studies spring semester 2018 Read more

  • Congratulations to fellows 2017!

    UNU-GEST and University of Iceland celebrate the graduation of 18 fellows from 12 countries with a post-graduate diploma in international gender studies more

  • Nordic Women Mediators annual meeting in Iceland

    UNU-GEST and the Icelandic Ministry for Foreign Affairs hosted the NWM annual meeting 7 and 8 May more

  • Human Development Report 2016

    Launch event with Dr. Selim Jahan, UNDP Human Development Report Office Director 14 March more
  • Visit to the President of Iceland

    The 2017 cohort of UNU-GEST fellows visited the President of Iceland, Mr. Guðni Th. Jóhannesson and the First Lady, Mrs. Eliza Reid at Bessastaðir, the presidential residence more

  • SDG#5: Parity and Empowerment

    UN Member States have designed a set of 17 Global Goals for Sustainable Development  »

Gender news from around the world

  • Ogoni widows file civil writ accusing Shell of complicity in Nigeria killings
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 28.06.2017
    Women bring case against Shell in the Netherlands seeking damages and public apology for state executions carried out by military court in 1995The widows of men who were hanged by Nigeria's military government in the 1990s have launched a civil case against Shell, accusing it of complicity in their husbands' executions.Esther Kiobel, the widow of Dr Barinem Kiobel, and three other women whose husbands were hanged in 1995, served a writ in a Dutch court this week, following a 20-year battle with the oil giant. Continue reading...
  • Child marriage will cost the world $4tn by 2030, researchers warn
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 28.06.2017
    Study suggests ending child marriage would save governments and donors hundreds of billions annually, rein in population growth and improve livesEnding child marriage could add more than $4tn to the global economy, curb population growth and transform the lives of millions of young women worldwide, claim researchers.A study by the World Bank and the International Center for Research on Women, the first to quantify the financial cost of the practice, suggests that eradicating child marriage would save governments money while enabling girls to complete their education and get better jobs. Continue reading...
  • Women of the favela: life in the abandoned buildings of Rio ? in pictures
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 28.06.2017
    Planned improvements to Rio's favelas have meant increases in rent, forcing the poorest families into squatting in unoccupied buildings. Photographer Tariq Zaidi visits the Mangueira community favela, less than 1km from the showpiece Maracanã stadium, to see what life is like for the women living thereAll photographs by Tariq Zaidi Continue reading...
  • US human trafficking report promotes Myanmar but demotes China
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 27.06.2017
    State Department's annual report rewards Myanmar for efforts against recruitment of child soldiers, but says China not doing enough to end trafficking The US asserted on Tuesday that Myanmar is no longer one of the world's worst offenders on human trafficking, removing it and Iraq from a list of countries that use child soldiers.But in its annual Trafficking in Persons report, the State Department also demoted China to the lowest ranking over its trafficking record, putting it in the same category as North Korea, Zimbabwe and Syria. Continue reading...
  • World Bank funds linked to forced labour in Uzbekistan
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 27.06.2017
    World Bank denies claims by human rights groups that bank-funded projects in Uzbekistan's cotton industry are using child and forced labourThe World Bank is accused of funding agricultural projects in Uzbekistan that are linked to state-sponsored child labour and forced labour in the cotton industry.In a report out on Tuesday, Human Rights Watch and the Uzbek-German Forum for Human Rights said they documented systematic forced labour and cases of child labour in an area where the Uzbek government is implementing a World Bank-funded irrigation project. Continue reading...
  • Peru launches investigation as fire kills workers 'locked inside container'
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 27.06.2017
    Peru's president condemns conditions of 'slave workers' as four young people die in blaze in Lima, at least two of whom were reportedly imprisoned insidePeru's public prosecutor's office has opened an investigation into human trafficking and labour exploitation following a fire in the capital that killed four young people.It is claimed that at least two of the men, Jorge Luis Huamán, 19, and Jovi Herrera, 21, had been locked inside a container on the roof of the Nicolini building in Lima by a boss they only knew as "gringo", when fire ripped through it on 22 June. Continue reading...
  • Africa facing shortfall of 50 million jobs by 2040, report says
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 27.06.2017
    Unemployment crisis will ravage the continent if it doesn't opt for market-based development, according to report by Tony Blair's InstituteParts of Africa could face a massive unemployment crisis by 2040, with "catastrophic" consequences for the global economy, new research has found.The report predicted a shortfall of 50 million jobs, which should serve as a "wake up call" for governments across much of the continent, as well as international donors and agencies. According to the analysis by the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, based on world bank data, the labour force in sub-saharan Africa will be 823 million by 2040, up from 395 million in 2015. However, total number of jobs is only expected to hit 773 million, it said, leaving 50 million people in Africa unemployed. Continue reading...
  • 'We don't know what they do behind the wall': Zambian women miss out on help
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 26.06.2017
    China is setting up agricultural centres across Africa, but in Zambia ? where the majority of farmers are female smallholders ? few women get the chance to learnOn the highway heading towards Chongwe, 15km south-east of Lusaka, the red Chinese lettering, high flagpoles and gleaming modern architecture of the Zambia Chinese Agricultural Technology Demonstration Centre (ZATDC) stand out amid the vast fields of maize.It is one of 25 such centres built across the continent as part of a grand plan to bring agricultural training to local people, helping them produce better crops with higher yields, so that food security is improved for everyone. Continue reading...
  • 'Before my brother died, I had dreams': the Kabul attack that unravelled a family ' Sune Engel Rasmussen
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 26.06.2017
    Once the family breadwinner, Hossein Panahi was among 150 people who died when a bomb ripped through the Afghan capital in May. Now his kin are destitute, adding to the toll of lives wrecked by the country's violenceAs an only son, Hossein Panahi was his family's sole provider. He supplied his sisters with clothes, his ailing parents with food and medicine, and built them all a house to live in. His salary meant his two older sisters did not have to marry young for dowry, but could wait for men they loved. He also put his third sister through law school. Continue reading...
  • Cambodian female workers in Nike, Asics and Puma factories suffer mass faintings
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 24.06.2017
    Sportswear brands review spate of incidents in factories where employees on short-term contracts work 10-hour days in soaring temperaturesWomen working in Cambodian factories supplying some of the world's best-known sportswear brands are suffering from repeated mass faintings linked to conditions.Over the past year more than 500 workers in four factories supplying to Nike, Puma, Asics and VF Corporation were hospitalised. The most serious episode, recorded over three days in November, saw 360 workers collapse. The brands confirmed the incidents, part of a pattern of faintings that has dogged the 600,000-strong mostly female garment workforce for years. Continue reading...
  • Move by UK supermarkets threatens to bring Fairtrade crashing down
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 24.06.2017
    Tesco is to join Sainsbury's in changing the branding of some 'fairly traded' productsWhen four Sainsbury's executives met farmers from some of Africa's biggest tea-growing co-operatives in a hotel in Nairobi last month it should have been a mutual celebration of Fairtrade, the gold standard of ethical trading and the world's most trusted and best-known food certification scheme.But instead of backslapping at the Pride hotel, the world's largest retailer of Fairtrade products precipitated the greatest crisis in the scheme's 25-year history by telling the 13 major tea groups and their 228,000 co-operative members that it intended to drop the globally known Fairtrade mark for their produce, and replace it with the phrase "fairly traded". Continue reading...
  • In a world ruled by rumour, it is vital that scientists speak with humility and clarity ' Sue Desmond-Hellmann
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 23.06.2017
    Facts are the science world's stock-in-trade, but in an era of fake news it is ever more important to build public trust by avoiding exaggerated claims and jargonOne of my most cherished possessions is a handmade cherrywood salad bowl that's never held a leaf of lettuce. It is 25 years old and gets more beautiful every year. The bowl was a gift, carved by a widower who was left to raise his daughter alone when his wife died under my care as an oncologist. My patient, who I'll call Erica, had the most challenging form of breast cancer and I didn't have the tools to save her life. I've always felt undeserving of the gift, despite doing everything I could.Five years later, I participated in the development of a medicine for Erica's type of cancer, Herceptin. While regretting that it had not come fast enough for Erica, I am deeply grateful for the scientific advances that mean better care for patients like her today. Continue reading...
  • Why do people still go hungry? ? video
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 23.06.2017
    There is enough food in the world to go around, yet hundreds of millions of people go to bed each night on an empty stomach. World leaders have promised to end hunger by 2030. But what causes it and how do we prevent it? Actor Dougray Scott explains Continue reading...
  • 'I buried my smallest one under a bush': starvation and sorrow in South Sudan ' Jason Burke
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 23.06.2017
    When Mary Cholil sought food and shelter after her village was torched, her three-year-old daughter died. In a country ravaged by hunger and conflict, such tragedies have become all too familiarThe news spreads fast during the day. The raiders are coming. Two columns of fighters, each thousands strong, armed with assault rifles. "We will fight them. We will take our guns and defend ourselves," says Simon Logocho, a stall holder in a scruffy market in Pibor, a remote town in eastern South Sudan. Continue reading...
  • Bunkers, blackmail and bureaucracy: aid agencies accused of outsourcing danger
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 22.06.2017
    'Unethical and dangerous practices' condemned as study claims charities keep staff at a safe remove from conflict while relying on local groups to carry out workAid agencies often rely on local people to carry out work in the world's war zones while their own staff remain holed up in bunkers, a report based on interviews with 2,000 humanitarian workers has found. Highlighting alarming practices in countries including Syria, Yemen and Iraq, the authors of the independent study said aid groups are spending too little time on the ground in conflict zones and are over-reliant on subcontractors. Continue reading...
  • 'I hope one day we'll see an end to abuse': the woman striving to save Congo's kids ' Hannah Summers
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 22.06.2017
    In a country where abuse and sexual violence are rife, a local police chief is on a mission to safeguard children and women from harmWhen Honorine Munyole visits a group of local women in the city of Bukavu, the police officer gets a welcome fit for a hero.But the celebrations turn to cries of despair and even anger when she makes her announcement ? she is to be redeployed to another location. Continue reading...
  • I want to stroll Tehran's streets at night, like men can: writer Fereshteh Ahmadi ' Saeed Kamali Dehghan
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 20.06.2017
    Under Hassan Rouhani's less repressive regime, female authors are starting to see their books in print, and daring to dream of greater independence Even the gentle references to sexuality in Fereshteh Ahmadi's short story Harry Is Always Lost meant it was hit by the censors. The female protagonist is late catching a flight. In a frantic taxi journey to the airport, she is with a man, but it is not clear if they are dating or are husband and wife. On the plane, she sits next to a strange man, who starts a conversation and ends up giving her a lift when they land in Tehran. This stranger drives so fast that the wind blows her scarf away, leaving her struggling to cover her head until they manage to buy a new one. Continue reading...
  • Jailed for calling Ugandan president a 'pair of buttocks', activist vows to fight on ' Alon Mwesigwa
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 19.06.2017
    A Facebook post criticising Yoweri Museveni landed academic Stella Nyanzi in jail, but she vows to continue her fight against oppression and poverty in UgandaA few minutes into our interview at one of Kampala's hotels, Stella Nyanzi's lawyer tells us the place is no longer safe for her and she needs to leave. She is constantly monitored by security agents these days, she says, which is perhaps not surprising as the academic and activist is one of the fiercest critics of the Ugandan government. But she is not about to back down.Not even the 33 days she spent in the country's maximum security Luzira women's prison for describing the president, Yoweri Museveni, as a "pair of buttocks" could change her stance. Continue reading...
  • 'We will break every bone': Islamist leaders threaten Bangladeshi lawyer
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 16.06.2017
    Sultana Kamal, chair of Transparency International Bangladesh, angered hardline Islamists by defending installation of statue outside Dhaka's supreme courtHuman rights groups have warned about the safety of a prominent Bangladeshi lawyer after Islamist leaders threatened to "break every bone" in her body for defending the installation of a Lady Justice statue outside the country's supreme court.Sultana Kamal's remarks on a television talk show last month have earned her death threats from Muslim hardliners in Bangladesh, where religious fanatics are suspected to have killed 30 activists and writers among others in the past four years. Continue reading...
  • 'Midwifery is a calling, not just a profession': childbirth stories around the world
    Women's rights and gender equality ' The Guardian 16.06.2017
    Midwives provide vital, often life-saving support to women and babies during delivery. From Bangladesh to Rwanda, Canada to Malawi, mothers share their experiences of care in childbirthRoughly 800 women and more than 8,000 newborns die every day, due to largely preventable complications during and after pregnancy and childbirth. If a well-trained midwife had been there, according to a Lancet study in 2014, 83% of those lives could have been saved (pdf).And as 4,000 midwives from 114 countries gather in Toronto this weekend for the International Confederation of Midwives Congress, the greatest concerns are around global shortages and under-investment in such an essential field of health. 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.