Women in Power and Decision-making

Beijing+20 - Women in Power and Decision-making

The Beijing Platform for Action called for equal access and full participation of women in power as well as in decision-making processes.

Since then, minor progress has been made, such as the introduction of a women’s quota in cer-tain countries or the advancement of women to heads of government. And still, women continue to be heavily under-represented in positions of power and decision-making. Structural discrimination means that women account for only a tiny portion of decision-makers in business, politics and virtually every area of society (media, universities and colleges, culture, sport, etc.). Socialization, negative role images, stereotypes and the lack of accessibility to networks for women increase the tendency for men to continue to be left to reach decisions.

Germany is a prime case in point: proposals, calls for change, voluntary self-declarations – in the past, nothing has helped to expand the share of women in executive positions. On the contrary, the proportion of women holding board positions in DAX-30 companies has actually decreased. Yet, a quota for women in business and public service has been the subject of extensive debate in Germany unlike virtually any other bill.

Even twenty years after Beijing, severe prejudice and discriminatory practices still impede women’s path to power and decision-making.


Our unique journey to implement UNSCR Resolution 1325 in Israel

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.

By Anat Thon-Ashkenazy , Netta Loevy

Moving an elephant: Working on women's rights in Lebanon

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

By Lina Abou-Habib, Noor Baalbaki

Video: Beijing+20 in South Africa

The Heinrich Böll Stiftung Southern Africa office spoke to five leading women’s rights activists on their perceptions of the challenges that women in South Africa face today and whether the Beijing Declaration, and South Africa’s commitment to it, remains relevant to addressing those challenges.

Brazil: women’s participation in elections

Do Brazil's women have an equal share in politics? Despite the 2014 election of a woman prime minister - Dilma Roussef - Brazil is far from gender equality. An analysis by Marilene de Paula.

By Marilene de Paula

"The government ignores the upcoming generation of females"

Manizha Ramiz heads the women’s committee at the Khatt-e Naw organization. She also teaches at the Accounting and Management Institute and works for Education TV. She was born in Kabul and went to the Ariana High School. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in management and is currently doing a Master's degree in psychology at Kabul University.

Women, Revolution, Politics and Power

During the Arab uprisings, an unprecedented number of women took to the streets, paving the way for a more important role in politics. However, in the transitional period that follows, they now have to fight against their exclusion from the political arena.

By Dalal al-Bizri

Good to Know

  • Progress of the World's Women 2015/2016: detailed report by the UN Women on the economical barriers facing women, and strategies of improving the political participation of women on a global scale. more>>
  • Beijing Platform for Action
    Read the 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action here
    An overview the Platform's 12 critical areas of concern by the UN Women. more>>
  • Women in Armed Conflicts: in the context of the CSW 59, the GWI co-hosted an event at concering a pressing issue for the Platform - women in armed conflicts. more>>


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