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CLOSING THE GENDER GAP
Advancing Equality through International Institutions
Barbara Adams and Karen Judd - February 2017

Photo: katrinaelsi, Flickr

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TRUMP AND AMERICAN DECLINE
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ENERGY TRANSITION: ARE WE WINNING?
Sean Sweeney and John Treat
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By Barbara Adams and Karen Judd. Almost 22 years have passed since the Fourth World Conference on Women was held in Beijing, marking a turning point for women’s rights activists around the world. For many, the approved Declaration and Platform for Action represented a moment of vindication for the rights, living experiences, and human dignity of women everywhere. But the promises made in Beijing regarding the indivisibility of human rights, gender equality, and the empowerment of women and girls were not fulfilled, and it is in the socioeconomic field where this deficit strikes one of its hardest blows.

The economic system of neoliberalism does not take into consideration the disadvantages faced every day by women, especially by those from the most vulnerable sections of society: women of color, working women, women in poverty, migrants, and elders. In fact, it rather deepens existing inequalities and power disparities. Austerity measures taken against vital services—such as childcare, transportation, health, education, and other social services—affect women in particular, exacerbating the differences imposed by a gendered division of labor and relegating women’s role in the formal economy.

This year’s Commission on the Status of Women (CSW 61) is set to address the issue of women’s economic empowerment in the changing world of work. Obscene accumulation of riches by sheer dispossession, the pervasive domination of white patriarchy in the society, and the artificially imposed separation between macroeconomic and social policies are some of the factors that keep our communities away from achieving substantive equality among genders. Formal adoption of legal frameworks are not enough to battle these disparities, and the actions directed to the expansion of opportunities instead of  guaranteeing rights fall short of the goal of enabling women’s advancement.

Empowerment in the economic sphere, therefore, has a meaning that goes beyond simply promoting women’s participation in economic activity. It must be built on the basis of a transformative and inclusive macroeconomic approach, within a framework founded on the respect of human rights and the mechanisms for their implementation. International institutions, with their relevant bodies and instruments, make up a crucial space to realize these goals. Only by adopting and carrying out a progressive gender agenda, backed by all the interested parties, will such an outcome be accomplished.

In the new RLS–NYC study “Closing the Gender Gap: Advancing Equality through International Institutions,” UN experts Barbara Adams and Karen Judd offer an informed and detailed analysis of the present and future of women’s economic empowerment in the context of multilateral organizations. Building a critical case against gender-blind and growth-ridden approaches to national and international economic policy-making, the authors present the readers with an essential set of tools for understanding the ideas and interests that undergird the different views of the concept of economic empowerment. They then assess strategies and their contributions to the realization of rights, and help us to envision a sustainable, accountable, and fair global system for women and girls everywhere.

DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT  (English)


Other publications in "Political Analysis and Alternatives"

MAPPING THE CANADIAN LEFT
Andrea Levy and Corvin Russell
February 2017

TRUMP AND AMERICAN DECLINE
Vijay Prashad
January 2017

ENERGY TRANSITION: ARE WE WINNING?
Sean Sweeney and John Treat
January 2017

NEWS / EVENTS

Photo: James Alexander

CAN THE LEFT BE REBUILT?

Across the western world the liberal center is in decline — but it is the radical right, not the Left, which stands to benefit. Why has the Left failed to capitalize on the ongoing systemic crisis? How has it become so divorced from its working-class base? And can the cycle be broken? Jon Trickett, Labour MP and member of Corbyn's Shadow Cabinet, speaks to Jacobin editor...
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Socialism in Social Networks

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NEWS / EVENTS

Photo: James Alexander

CAN THE LEFT BE REBUILT?

Across the western world the liberal center is in decline — but it is the radical right, not the Left, which stands to benefit. Why has the Left failed to capitalize on the ongoing systemic crisis? How has it become so divorced from its working-class base? And can the cycle be broken? Jon Trickett, Labour MP and member of Corbyn’s Shadow Cabinet, speaks to Jacobin editor Bhaskar Sunkara. This event is co-hosted......
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Socialism in Social Networks

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Socialism in Social Networks

GLOBAL POWER AND RESISTANCE THE FUTURE OF LABOR SOCIAL MOVEMENTS AND EMANCIPATION POLITICAL ANALYSIS AND ALTERNATIVES