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Women’s civic and political participation: where are the data gaps?

This blog, written by Wikigender Coordinator Estelle Loiseau, gives some highlights of the Wikigender online discussion on “Data Gaps on Gender Equality”, which in its last week focused on the civic and political participation of women.

In this final week participants discussed on where the gaps are and where improvements can be made in terms of data on women’s civic and political participation

Questions asked included what type of data can we use/should we use to measure women’s civic and political participation; whether attitudinal data can be used more systematically to better document women’s civic and political engagement; how new technologies can be used to better map women’s collective action; examples of women’s collective action that resulted in an improvement of their lives; and more!

The discussion culminated with 88 comments, below are some highlights. To see all the comments made, please visit the discussion page.

Where are some of the data gaps and issues ?

  • In the case of Chile, there is some gender data in terms of female representation in the electoral system, but no statistics on attitudes to female political participation and agency
  • There is a lack of indicators on women’s collective action
  • There are issues of sisues of coverage and frequency for attitudinal surveys. We need a global push for harmonisation on key questions such as attitudes towards female political participation – and this includes more political will too!
  • Apart from the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) which collects data on women in parliament, there is no equivalent for the sub-national level
  • For PARIS21, we are a the beginning of the ideal sequence (illustrated as per the diagram below); there might be some administrative open data, but it is a question of priority setting to address the multiple demands and limited resources.
The ideal sequence for statisticans to produce data on women’s civic and political participation would be as follows. Once the feedback part done, the cycle would start back again with the integration of this data in programmes:

“As the OECD is increasingly using subjective sources of information like Gallup (or Latinobarómetro in the case of Latin America), we should be able to build better indicators for identifying political preferences by gender and understand better these contrasts.”

                                                                                       – Rolando                       

What type of data do we need?

  • We need a focus on how women use digital platforms for political activities – we need surveys to understand who the users of such platforms are
  • We need data on vulnerable women: in the case of Latin America, women of Indigenous and African descent face the greatest barriers to political participation
  • There are some examples of projects that focus on attitudinal information: Through the SWMENA project (Status of Women in the Middle East and North Africa), country-specific but comparable surveys are produced on how women in Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia and Yemen see themselves as members of society.

Some unanswered questions

  • Can big data and ICT technologies bridge those data gaps?
  • What is the role of national and international institutes in that process?
  • How can the EU and Latin America cooperate on women’s political participation, amongst other issues? 

“It would be interesting to also see whether we can better capture what women’s civic participation can do for the development of communities in general, and for women in particular. The collective action for women may have more impact in that respect. Are there any initiatives to capture that impact anywhere?”                                                                                                                                         – Keiko Nowacka

Your question/comment was not addressed? You would like to add more to this discussion by sharing your data/resources? Click here and create you article on Wikigender! 

We are now in the process of reading all the contributions to this discussion and we will soon share the synthesis report from the whole discussion. Stay tuned on

*The discussion is brought to you by Wikigender, the UN FoundationHealth Behaviour in School-Aged Children (HBSC), the EU-LAC FoundationEuropean Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE), ECLAC and PARIS21 – and in collaboration with Wikiprogress and Wikichild.

Education that Promotes Well-being


to join an online discussion on

Experiences in Latin America: kindergarten, primary, secondary/technical and university

 from 09:00, 11 February until 22:00, 25 February 2014
La OCDE Centro de México, SAVISO, IEP, OECD Education, Wikiprogress and Wikiprogress América Latina would like to invite you to join the discussion about “Education that promotes well-being”. This online discussion provides a unique opportunity to reflect and exchange best practices, research and experiences on the topic.

The discussion will focus on the following questions:
  •  In Latin America, what does it mean to have an education that promotes well-being and improves quality of life? Do we need to go beyond the concept of human capital?
  • What are the characteristics of an education model that promotes well-being?
  • What community programmes, social experiments and public policies are currently being conducted in Latin America that help foster education models which promote well-being
  • What extra efforts are needed in order to construct education models that promote well-being? Who should be responsible for designing and implementing them?

We invite you to leave your comments in Spanish, Portuguese, English or French under the section entitled “Contribuye” on the discussion webpage. To participate, click here
This is the link to the page: and the hashtags in Twitter are #teachlearn and  #EducaciónDeCalidad
You can also follow:

Our email is:, should you have any queries or wish to get involved with the America Latina Network!
We look forward to your participation. 

Wikiprogress America Latina Network

Suggested readings:
Contrato Social por la Educación. Educación y Buen Vivir

Violence against women: where are the data gaps?

This blog, written by Wikigender Coordinator Estelle Loiseau, gives some highlights of the Wikigender online discussion on “Data Gaps on Gender Equality”, which in its second week focused on violence against women (VAW).

The discussion continued last week on where has progress been made, where the gaps are and where improvements can be made in terms of data on violence against women (69 comments!) 

Here below are some highlights from the discussion. Please go to the discussion page for more details.

Where are some of the data gaps and issues ?

  • There are many data gaps at sub-regional level
  • There is a definition issue when collecting data: what is violence? it depends on the cultural context, especially when talking about “non-physical violence”
  • The absence of reliable data is also political (it is a question of priority)
“Besides technical obstacles to scientific data collection, absence of (reliable) data is often political too: it can be an indicator that the issue is not considered a political priority. Despite the importance of (comparable) data to better understand the phenomenon and to provide evidence for legislative and politic responses, significant gaps remain – both at national and regional/international levels.”
                                                              – Sarah Werner – The World Future Counci

What type of data do we need?

  • We need to use attitudinal data, for example on adolescent girls’ perceptions of sexual violence and harassment 
  • We need more data on what kind of programmes are able to have an impact on life outcomes for girls
  • We must continue to establish indicators based on administrative data (UNECE lead)
  • We need to use statistical analysis that goes beyond simple descriptive analysis (e.g. logit models)
  • Both administrative and survey data tell us important but different information on prevalence of violence estimates. They complement each other in that survey data gives the prevalence and incidence, while administrative data is important for the reporting of violence.

“I think we need to understand more about how adolescent women perceive sexual violence and harassment. I have a feeling that we do not enough, especially in light of new media and technology which allow new channels.” 
                                                                                             – Sophie Walsh

    Resources shared

    “The FRA survey interviewed 42,000 women in the 28 EU Member States based on a representative, random sample of respondents. The survey will provide data on physical, sexual and psychological violence against women, sexual harassment and stalking.”
                                                                                                – Sami Nevala – FRA

    This third week (10-14 February), we turn the focus on data gaps in the area of women’s civic and political participationSee the questions asked for the final week and join in the conversation!

    *The discussion is brought to you by Wikigender, the UN FoundationHealth Behaviour in School-Aged Children (HBSC), the EU-LAC FoundationEuropean Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE), ECLAC and PARIS21 – and in collaboration with Wikiprogress and Wikichild.

    How do gender norms relate to migration?

    Wikigender, the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the Scalabrini Migration Center (SMC), Wikiprogress and Wikichild would like to hear your views on the linkages between the social norms that discriminate against women (such as harmful practices, restricted access to resources, limited decision-making power, or violence against women) and migration processes.

    In September, the OECD Development Centre will publish an issues paper looking at migration from a gender perspective, based on new findings from the Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI). Wikigender, IOM, SMC, Wikiprogress and Wikichild would like to invite you to participate in an online discussion on the topic from 2 September at 9am until 15 September at 6pm (GMT+1). The main findings of the discussion will be featured in the issues paper and the outcomes of the discussion will be synthesised in a final report and available on Wikigender. The debate will focus on the following topic:

    This online discussion will be a unique opportunity to discuss, exchange views and best practices on this issue. Participants are invited to share findings from their research or their own experiences of migration with other members of the discussion. The discussion will focus on the questions below:
    How do gender norms relate to migration?
    • How do discriminatory social norms and practices (for example, women’s lower status in the family, violence and discrimination against women or restricted access to resources) relate to female migration? Do they act as an incentive to migrate for women?
    • Which discriminatory social norms and practices hinder female migration the most and why? What can be done about it?
    • Do social norms play a role in female migration in terms of choice of destination?
    Impacts of gendered migration patterns
    • What role do social networks play in enabling female migration?
    • How does female/male migration impact on family dynamics in both the country of origin and destination?
    • How does increased female migration impact on gender norms in origin and destination countries?
    • Do you have examples of more restrictive social norms imported by migrants to their communities of origin?
    Policy and data
    • What are the good practices (policies, initiatives, campaigns or programmes) that ensure women migrants’ human rights in both the country of origin and the country of destination?
    • What are some of the key indicators that are or could be collected to better understand the social and economic outcomes for female migrants? How can this be measured? 

    We invite you to leave your comment in the section “Contribute!” of the discussion page. Here is the link: and the hashtag used in Twitter is #migration

    Estelle Loiseau
    Wikigender Co-ordinator

    Initial stocktaking analysis of the SDGs e‐Inventory: Visions for global goals

    This blog, written by Amy Cutter and Jack Cornforth of Stakeholder Forum, discusses the breakdown of proposed Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by theme, stakeholders and regions. It is a cross-blog from the Stakeholder Forum’s Sustainable Development 2015 website and is part of WikiprogressPost-2015 and environment series.

    It has been a busy month for governments, UN agencies and stakeholders working towards a new sustainable development framework for post-2015. The UN Secretary General’s High Level Panel, Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and the UN Global Compact have all published reports with their recommendations for new global goals to replace the MDGs when they expire at the end of 2015, and the intergovernmental Open Working Group (OWG) tasked with proposing a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) has just met for the last time before its summer break, to discuss how thematic areas such as health, employment and education could be addressed by the new goals framework.
    Stakeholder Forum, with support from partners in all global regions, is contributing to these efforts by coordinating the SDGs e-Inventory, an online tool that provides stakeholders with a platform to outline what they think future universal goals for sustainable development should look like. The e-Inventory, which is available in three languages (English, Spanish and French),  also provides a searchable database to help stakeholders – including governments and intergovernmental organisations – to keep track of the wide range of proposals being developed on SDGs, and other global goals for development being proposed as part of the global post-2015 development framework.
    The platform is concentrated on proposals that outline the thematic areas that a new global development framework should address, or that go as far as to suggest specific goals, targets and indicators. The SDGs e-Inventory is the only online platform that enables stakeholders to directly upload their ideas and recommendations to a database of proposals for future development goals. As well as being publically available online, this data will be analysed and shared with governments, stakeholders and relevant UN coordinating bodies, as the decision-making process progresses.
    Before the OWG meetings resume again in November, the summer break provides an opportunity for governments and stakeholders to reflect on the discussions and consultations that have taken place so far. With this in mind, Stakeholder Forum has conducted an initial stocktaking of the proposals housed in the e-Inventory (71 in total), in order to provide a breakdown of the thematic areas that the proposals address, as well as a snapshot of the individuals and organisations that have put forward proposals on global goals.
    Thematic breakdown of the proposals so far

    Top 10 proposed themes                        
    The themes listed in the right-hand table shows overlap with similar analysis conducted by the Overseas Development Institute, and with the results of the UN’s MY World survey, both of which also show employment, food, health, education, governance and water as top ten priorities. 
    The other three themes in the top ten – gender equality, Human Rights and social protection – feature less highly in other analyses, but have been prominent topics throughout the international policy discussions on the post-2015 development agenda. This is reflected in the three key reports to emerge from the process so far. The High Level Panel, SDSN, and UN Global Compact reports all put forward a specific goal on gender equality, and incorporate Human Rights and social protection within their proposed goals and guiding principles.
    A small number (10) of the proposals that we looked at cited poverty eradication or sustainable development as themes, however, we chose to exclude these topics from the thematic analysis as they both represent integral overarching components of a future framework, rather than individual themes that the framework will work to address. Poverty eradication is the overall objective that the post-2015 development framework aims to achieve and sustainable development is the means by which it seeks to achieve it.

    Which stakeholder groups are participating?
    Breakdown by stakeholder type of all proposals in the SDGs e-Inventory
    Just over a quarter of the proposals we looked at came from intergovernmental organisations such as the United Nations Development Program, the World Health Organization, UN entities that relate specifically to post-2015 – including the UN System Task Team, the Secretary-General’s High Level Panel and the Sustainable Development Solutions Network – as well as a number of regional entities like the European Commission, the African Development Bank and African Union Commission.
    NGOs also account for around a quarter of proposals, and include national, regional and international entities. The majority of these organisations work on specific topics (like the Basic Education Coalition, the Partnership for Sustainable Low Carbon Transport, and World Vision), however there are also a small number which have a broader thematic mandate (i.e. CONCORD European Task Force). Yet it is noteworthy that there is a distinct lack of proposals specifically from environmental organisations.
    Governments account for 14% of proposals, which include recommendations from individual nations like Columbia, Japan, and Mongolia, as well as a number of intergovernmental groupings such as the International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding and the Commonwealth Ministerial Working Group. This figure may well increase as the intergovernmental discussions progress and Member State positions become more developed.
    Other stakeholder types represented include Academia (11%) and Think Tanks (7%), with a small number of Major Groups’ submissions accounting for the remainder of proposals. Among the Major Groups, Children and Youth were the most strongly represented so far (6%), while Farmers, Local Authorities and Indigenous Peoples were notably absent. We hope that the recent translation of the SDGs e-Inventory interface into Spanish and French will increase the accessibility of the tool and encourage submissions from these and other under represented groups.
    Regional distribution
    The large number of proposals by intergovernmental organisations is also evident from the regional distribution, which shows that more than half of the proposals in the e-Inventory are classified as international. In addition to the UN bodies and international financial institutions mentioned above, a number of international NGOs or NGO networks – such as Save the Children and the Campaign for Peoples Goals for Sustainable Development – as well as other global stakeholder coalitions, like the International Trade Union Confederation, also fall under the international category.
    Distribution by region of all proposals in the SDGs e-Inventory
    30 percent of the proposals emanate from Europe and North America, whereas Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Oceania combined only account for half this number, revealing an asymmetry in the number of proposals from the Global North and South. This disparity has been recognised by a number of observers of the process (including here, here and here). A lack of resources and capacity to translate experiences into proposals for specific goals, targets and indicators is a likely contributing factor. With this in mind, the SDGs e-Inventory aims to support stakeholders to develop their own proposals by housing a range of resources to provide information on the different processes working towards the development of a post-2015 development framework, and the use of targets and indicators to measure progress.
    Stakeholder Forum is also working closely with project partners in the regions currently underrepresented to address the lack of participation from the Global South, and encourage further submissions to the e-Inventory. As other civil society voices have observed, comprehensive engagement of the world’s poorest and most marginalised groups at this stage of the process will be vital to ensure that the new global goals are characterised by greater ownership and empowerment than the preceding Millennium Development Goals framework.
    Next Steps
    The SDGs e-Inventory will continue to solicit proposals from stakeholders as the intergovernmental process to create a new set of global goals for sustainable development continues. In September 2013, we will publish a more in-depth study of the proposals housed within the e-Inventory to look in detail at the different goals, targets and indicators being proposed across the thematic areas, as well as who is proposing them.

    After September, we will then publish updated analysis focusing on the themes of the four remaining OWG meetings scheduled to take place between November 2013 and February 2014. A full timeline for the e-Inventory project (including analysis outputs) is available here.

    The SDGs e-Inventory is open to all stakeholders to publish their recommendations for future global goals.  Whether you are working on a particular theme, or looking at a range of issues which span the post-2015 development agenda, we want to know your vision for the new global goals framework. Submit your proposal here.

    Amy Cutter and Jack Cornforth

    Download the PDF version of the analysis here.


    Wikigender is your community!

    This blog, by Wikigender Co-ordinator Estelle Loiseau, is part of the Wikiprogress  focus on networks over the summer. The Wikigender Network will be in the spotlight from 22-31 July. 


    Wikigender is a platform that gathers a wide community of gender equality advocates and experts from around the world to discuss and share knowledge on gender equality and development issues.

    It now has over 50,000 unique monthly visitors, more than 2,600 editors and over 1,600 articles. Anyone with a Wikigender account can create, edit articles and add events – and also receives the Wikigender Connect, our monthly newsletter. Each user has a profile where he can add friends, send messages to other members from the Wikigender community and see his/her contributions.

    Browse our categories to see what topics we cover! 

    We are a wiki, so we always want more articles, this is how you make Wikigender such a vibrant community!

    Online discussions

    Did you say gender equality? 
    What about engaging men and boys? Tackling violence against women? Engaging women and men to ensure sustainable development? Empowering rural women? 

    Since 2012 we organise regular online discussions to further engage the community in various topics. The main findings of each online discussion are then collated in a synthesis report, with quotes from the participants, and presented at our events.

    Your Community Portal

    The community portal is where you find our media review on gender equality updated daily, recent papers and publications, featured videos and other news. It is YOUR community portal and we like it when you enrich this space with your articles and blogs, publications or videos!
    We also have a special focus space that we change regularly – currently on Malala and her fight for education.

    Wikigender University

    Are you at a university? Would you like to participate even more, write on gender equality issues that matter to you for a particular project at university, or with a group of friends from your university? 
    You can strat a project within your own university and connect with other students from different countries with our Wikigender University programme. Currently we have 6 participating universities from France, Mexico, India, Thailand and the United States.

    Want to be part of the Wikigender Network? Simply create your account here. You can also follows us on Twitter and Facebook.
    Any ideas? questions? We want to hear from you! Email us:
    Estelle Loiseau
    Wikigender Co-ordinator

    Launch of the Gender Equality Index

    The European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) has released the first Gender Equality Index for the European Union on 13 June 2013 in Brussels.

    “The Gender Equality Index shows differences in outcomes between women and men at the individual level in EU Member States (…) This unique measurement tool supports evidence-based policy-making and indicates where political priorities should be shifted to accelerate the process of achieving a gender-equal Europe”.

    Virginija Langbakk, Director of EIGE (read more).

    The Gender Equality Index provides a measure of how far or how close a Member State was from achieving gender equality in 2010. The Index scores the EU overall as well as each Member State in six core domains:

    1. work
    2. money
    3. knowledge
    4. time
    5. power
    6. health

    and two satellite domains: intersecting inequalities and violence.

    The score assigned to each country goes from 1 (no gender equality) to 100 (full gender equality).

    The average EU score is 54, indicating that the EU is still about half-way to achieving a gender-equal society. Interestingly, it is the domain of power that highlights the biggest gender gap, with an average score of only 38 at EU level, followed closely by the domain of time with a score of 38.8, which points to wide differences between women and men when it comes to time spent on unpaid caring and domestic activities.

    There will be regular updates for this Gender Equality Index, which hopes to offer EU policy makers a reliable tool in assessing the progress and effectiveness of policies aimed at improving gender equality in general and specific policy areas.

    More information:

    Estelle Loiseau
    Wikigender Co-ordinator

    Gender equality and post-2015: what’s new? Perspectives from the 11th OECD Gendernet meeting

    Last week, Wikigender attended the 11th meeting of the OECD DAC Network on Gender Equality. Among the discussion topics on the agenda, participants exchanged their thoughts about the “unfinished business” of the MDGs and the post-2015 development agenda. Here I would like to share with you some of the points and questions raised during the meeting and invite your comments below this blog post.

    Participants capitalised on the positive lessons learnt from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and identified areas of improvement for the post-2015 agenda.

    On the positive side for example, it was mentioned that MDG3 was at the heart of poverty reduction strategies and therefore helped to get the dialogue started on gender equality issues – for example we have seen very good results in terms of girls’ education, especially at primary level. Many participants agreed that having a standalone goal on gender equality as well as comprehensive mainstreaming of gender equality across all of the goals was the best way to achieve visibility in the post-2015 framework. This should be accompanied by concise and strategic language around the goals as well as key partnerships. Also, goals should reconcile the human rights based approach with the development practical approach – so that, through the intrinsic value of gender equality and women’s empowerment, we can reaffirm policy commitment and funding and continue to rally gender equality advocates.

    In terms of what could be improved, it was mentioned that there should be more focus at sub-national level, in particular to address the needs of specific populations such as ethnic minorities. On content, it was agreed that MDG3 was too narrow and there were serious omissions, such as gender-based violence for example. Some priority areas outlined for post 2015 included women’s choices and capabilities, violence against women and women’s participation in the household, including unpaid work and decision-making in both the public and private spheres.

    Overall, there was agreement that we need to address the structural drivers of gender inequality (such as violence against women, early marriage, etc.) now  (why wait until 2015 when we can act now?); use what worked as “pivot points”, as some can have a multiplier effect and can help in prioritising the actions needed; and further improve data collection, reporting as well as quality and coverage.

    What are your experiences in your country? Which areas of the MDGs can we build upon and where can we be transformative or innovative?

    Estelle Loiseau
    Wikigender Co-ordinator

    Health Week in Review

    This Week in Review by Robbie Lawrence, WikichildCoordinator, is part of the Wikiprogress HealthSeries.
    Hi everyone and welcome to another #Health related Week in Review. This week we are focusing on an array of health related topics, ranging from social progress to reports on nutrition.  Highlights include: The Social Progress Index, the IFPRRI’s Global Hunger Index, a look back at World Water Day and UNICEF’s recently released Child Nutrition report.
    *This year, the Social Progress Imperative released its now annual Social Progress Index, a tool that ranks national, social and environmental progress across 50 countries representing three quarters of the world’s population. The Index will display how well countries provide for the non-economic needs of their citizens, enabling leaders in different sectors to effectively target a country’s social and environmental challenges. SPI hopes to expand the index each year so that 120 countries will eventually be included.
    *As we reported last week, The Institute of Development Studies’ has issued its new Hunger and Nutrition Commitment Index, a measurement of political commitment to tackling hunger and malnutrition in 45 developing countries. This tool follows on from the International Food Policy Research Institute’s Global Hunger Index, published in January. The GHI is put together to comprehensively measure and track hunger globally by country and region and highlights successes and failures in hunger reduction. It also provides insights into the drivers of hunger in a bid to raise awareness and catalyze action.
    *On Monday, UNICEF published Improving Child Nutrition: The achievable imperative for global progress which revealed that significant global progress has been made in tackling stunting – the long-term effect of hunger and malnutrition. The evidence laid out in UNICEF’s report and the momentum generated by their successes shows that improving child and maternal nutrition is an achievable necessity for global progress. If you haven’t read it already, check out our blogon the report.
    *The OECD Mental Health and Work Project has launched a new series of reports focusing on how mental health and work is being tackled in a number of OECD countries including Belgium, Denmark, Norway and Sweden. According to the OECD, tackling mental health of the working age population should become a key feature of future development frameworks. .
    *A recap on World Water Day, as access to clean water is so fundamental to health. The event is held around the world as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. As climate change and political and social conflicts reduce fresh water supplies, nearly 800 million people are without clean or safe water and almost 40% of the world’s population do not have access to sanitation. Next to pneumonia, diarrhea is now the biggest killer of children between one month and five years old. Follow the #igiveashit feed to find out more.

    We look forward to more #health related articles next week!

    The Wikiprogress Team