Beijing+20 - Women’s rights worldwide – implementation once and for all

Gender equity is vital to social development and peaceful cohabitation, to reducing violence and to achieving economic prosperity. Poverty can only be lastingly combated and human rights enforced if women are granted extensive equal access to education, public offices and powerful positions. This recognition formed the basis for the Beijing Platform for Action as far back as 20 years ago for which a strong international women’s movement had fought and which was adopted at the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995. It was considered back then – and is still considered today – to mark a milestone in the entrenching of women’s and human rights worldwide and was recognized by 191 member states of the United Nations. The Commission on the Status of Women's (CSW) 2015 review of how these demands were implemented demonstrates, how urgent and globally relevant the issues of the Beijing Platform for Action remain.

More information can be found in our detailed Dossier on Beijing +20.

Feminism and the womens media

Women’s magazines have long faced critique for their often narrow and conceptualized portrayal of women and the impact that this has on the consumer. In their paper, Joy Watson and Claudia Lopes explore both harmful and emancipatory  aspects of women's magazines over different periods in time.


Th Heinrich-Boell-Foundation in Nairobi has created six illustrations that highlight and discuss some of the ongoing challenges around the imporant tasks of targeting and reaching men as advocates for gender equality in Kenya.

The sole female doctor of the Herat Regional Military Hospital is honored in 2011. Afghan Women have had a long journey in terms of their rights and socio-political participation since the Taliban downfall in 2001.

Afghan Women have had a long journey in terms of their rights and socio-political participation since the Taliban downfall in 2001. As Afghanistan has just entered into a new decade of transformation, the main questions related to women, peace and security remain: What has been built to ensure women’s protection and participation over the last decade? And what strategic approach could consolidate gender equality in the decade to come?

Dossier: Beijing+20

Creator: UN Women. All rights reserved.

“Empowering Women – Empowering Humanity: Picture It!”. With this slogan, UN Women has been mobilizing international representatives of women’s NGOs worldwide to engage in “Beijing + 20” and calling for a new boost in the participation and emancipation of women.


Last December, the Israeli Government decided to establish a governmental committee to create a National Action Plan in the spirit  of UN Security Council Resolution 1325. The resolution calls on UN member states to protect women from violence, increase the participation of diverse women in decision-making bodies, and for the prevention of armed conflict. This video and the text that follows tells the story of the journey of civil society NGOs to create an Action Plan for Israel.

Michaela Marksová Tominová is a Czech politician concerned with gender equality

Although Michaela Marksová Tominová studied natural sciences, she has long been engaged with the issue of gender equality. This is the politicians view on the implementation of Beijing +20 in the Czech Republic


While legislative and institutional progresses have been made in Morroco, the implementations of Beijing +20 often remain inadequate and below the citizens’ expectations due to a lack of budgetary resources or political willingness.

International Gender Politics

The Heinrich-Böll-Foundation Brazil asked four female Experts from different generations to reflect the progress of women’s rights in Brazil since 1995.


Ranjana Kumari, Director of the Centre for Social Research in New Delhi, is a veteran Indian feminist who has been following the International Women’s Conferences since Nairobi in 1985. She just returned from the March 2015 meeting in New York. We talked with her about women’s rights and gender equity in India.

At COP20, parties adopted the Lima Work Programme on Gender to advance implementation of existing gender mandates across all areas of the climate negotiations. This HBF-WEDO submission proposes how an in-session workshop during the forty-second session of the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (June 2015) could advance gender-responsive mitigation action and technology development.

The monthly Gender Forum took place on November 27, hosted by Heinrich Böll Foundation

To fully realize the two thirds gender rule in the national Assembly and the Senate, Kenyans will have to agree to a minimum constitutional amendment. This was the message that was given at the monthly Gender Forum organized by the Heinrich Böll Foundation on November 27.

Humaira Saqib

Humaira Saqib is the chairwoman and editor-in-chief of Women News Agency and Nigah-e Zan magazine. She is also a member of the leadership board of the “Women Political Participation Committee” and a member of “Afghanistan 1400.” In the interview she talks about the political future of women in Afghanistan.

Peace & Security

The Danzer case: local subsidiary pays military and police to brutally harrass residents

The Danzer case is an example of European businesses working in conflict regions and profiting greatly from the brutal actions by the police, the army or paramilitary groups. Anna von Gall analyzes the international legal framework and urges Germany to pursue legislative clarification relating to due diligence requirements for foreign subsidiaries of European companies


Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, the Gunda-Werner-Institute and its partners organized two panel discussions on strengthening accountability for gender-based crimes in armed conflicts. On this occasion, several international experts and activists discussed the current situation in Colombia, continued barriers to justice and cautious hopes for a more peaceful future.  

Feminism & Gender Democracy

In Beirut many people engage in women's rights, as for example at this anti-rape protest in 2012. Meanwhile, in the rest of the country, women literally have no rights, says women's rights activist Lina Abou Habib

For feminist and women's rights activist Lina Abou Habib, the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action can be considered a milestone in fighting for women's rights in Lebanon. An interview by Noor Baalbaki

Ly Pisey at the Women's Conference on Beijing+20 in Cambodia

20 years after the Beijing Platform for Action, Ly Pisey from the Women‘s Network for Unity critically reflects on the ongoing work improving women's lives in Cambodia.


Checklist with one done

The European Parliament Resolution on Undocumented Women and the EU Elections - As Europe prepares to go the polls this month to elect its representatives for the 2014-2019 European Parliament, we invite you to take a deeper look into the recently passed European Parliament Resolution on Undocumented Migrant Women in the EU.

women sitting with her ​​back to the camera alone in a park

Gender-based violence in Europe’s fight against irregular migration Gender-based discrimination augments migrant women’s susceptibility to violence and when combined with an irregular status, contributes to a worrying culture of impunity within the EU.          

Gunda Werner Institute

Feminism and gender democracy are an all-encompassing shared task of the Heinrich Böll Foundation. The Gunda Werner Institute in the Heinrich Böll Foundation (GWI) combines gender political questions and furthers the debate about feminism and gender democracy.


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Sexual and Reproductive Rights

Women’s bodies have regularly been – and still are – the central target of conservative and fundamentalist ideology and praxis. This essay provides analytical background information for critical and controversial debates and motivation to explore political intervention.

Gender, Scientificness and Ideology

Who uses the term "gender" is often confronted with the charge of a principal unscientific. The brochure follows this allegation and provides you with arguments for such disputes.

Cover Transitional Justice

In post-war periods and in the aftermath of serious, systematic human rights violations, gender-based forms of violence are usually forgotten during the processing of the past and reconciliation phase. This study details these problems and presents the resulting challenges facing politicians and society.

Peace and Security for All

Feminist Positions and Perspectives on Peace and Security Policy. In this publication the Gunda Werner Institute presents a detailed position paper to contribute to the international debate on peace and security policy. S. Publication series of the Gunda Werner Institute, Volume 6, March 2010.