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May 2012

Women in International Law: Transforming the Legal Landscape

42 West 44th St. (bet. 5th & 6th Ave.), New York, 1 May 2012
Host / Sponsor: The International Law Committee, The Women in Courts Task Force, UN Women

A preeminent panel of female leaders will share unique insights, inspiring experiences, new developments, challenges, and opportunities as they discuss their roles in international legal organizations, the judiciary, and private practice in the United States and around the world. The panel will be preceded by a reception at 6:30 pm.

Registration: There is no charge for this program. To register please click here.


  • DEBORA DE HOYOS, Former Managing Partner, Mayer Brown LLP, Chicago
  • SARAH FRANÇOIS-PONCET, Secretary General / General Counsel, Chanel ( France)
  • LAURA TURQUET, Head of the Data and Research Section of UN Women; Lead author of UN Women's flagship report, Progress of the World's Women
  • HON . PATRICIA M. WALD, Judge, International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY)
  • Former chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit

> Read more

Launch of the 2012 Social Institutions and Gender Index: Measuring the underlying drivers of gender inequalities

Marshall Center Auditorium, US Department of State, Entrance on 21 Street, at Virginia Ave NW, Washington, DC, 9:00am-12:00pm, 10 May 2012
Host / Sponsor: United States Department of State, OECD Development Centre

While conventional indicators of gender equality capture inequality in outcomes such as education and employment, the OECD Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) focuses instead on the underlying drivers of these inequalities. Applying the SIGI data to issues as diverse as employment, hunger and the achievement of the MDGs has shown that countries displaying higher levels of discrimination against women are also performing more poorly on a range of development indicators. Strengthening our understanding of these discriminatory factors would therefore enable the development of more effective and targeted policies in support of gender equality at the local, national and global levels.

The launch event is co-hosted by the United States Department of State and the OECD Development Centre. A presentation of the 2012 SIGI data and rankings will be followed by a discussion of the following important topics:

Measuring social institutions at the country level: the SIGI India pilot

  • How do donors address discriminatory social institutions?
  • What drives change?
  • Evidence from the Middle East and North Africa

RSVP by email to: washington.contact[at]oecd.org. To guarantee entrance to the State Department for this event, please include your name, date of birth, citizenship, as well as drivers license # and issuing state OR passport # when you RSVP.

> Read more [pdf]

Training of Gender Audit Facilitators

Turin, Italy, 14-18 May 2012
Host / Sponsor: International Training Centre, ILO

The five-day course shall begin with an overall introduction to gender, work and development issues and an exposure to international experiences in mainstreaming gender concerns in public administration.

It will then continue with a full immersion in the GA methodology and its instruments.

Areas such as:

  • Mainstreaming of gender equality as a cross-cutting concern in the organisation's objectives, programme and budget;
  • existing gender expertise, competence and capacity building;  information and knowledge management;
  • choice of partner organizations;  staffing and human resources; and  perception of achievement on gender equality. are among the explored elements.

Application Deadline: 2 April 2012.

> Read more

World Telecommunication and Information Society Day

Worldwide, 17 May 2012
Host / Sponsor: International Telecommunication Union (ITU)

The purpose of World Telecommunication and Information Society Day (WTISD) is to help raise awareness of the possibilities that the use of the Internet and other information and communication technologies (ICT) can bring to societies and economies, as well as of ways to bridge the digital divide. 17 May marks the anniversary of the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention and the creation of the International Telecommunication Union.

The theme of this year's WTISD, "Women and Girls in ICT", aims to ensure that this vulnerable female half of the world's population will march forward as equals. As a means of bringing global attention to this theme, ITU will present the annual World Telecommunication and Information Society Award to eminent personalities who have contributed to bringing attention to the world's women and girls and used the power of ICTs to empower them as equals. The Award presentation ceremony will be held on Wednesday, 16 May from 10 am in the Popov room at ITU headquarters, Geneva.

> Read more

World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development (Contest)

Worldwide, 21 May 2012
Hosts / Sponsors: UNESCO Centre of Florence in partnership with the UN Alliance of Civilizations and campaign partners

As part of the 'Do One Thing For Diversity and Inclusion' 2012 campaign, the UNESCO Centre of Florence in partnership with the UN Alliance of Civilizations and all the partners of the campaign are launching a video contest and a photo contest to celebrate the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development.

Join the campaign and send us your videos or photos! Subject: What does "Diversity" mean to you? Why does diversity matter to you? Tell us your personal vision.

Submission Deadline: Entries must be submitted by May 31, 2012

> Read more for full guidelines

International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers

Worldwide, 29 May 2012
Hosts / Sponsors: United Nations

29 May is the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers. The theme this year is a celebration of global partnerships, which include Member States, the UN Secretariat, host countries, regional organizations and UN partners — all working to bring peace and security to some of the world's most troubled areas.

The day has two purposes: to honour the memory of the UN peacekeepers who have lost their lives in the cause of peace and to pay tribute to all the men and women who have served and continue to serve in UN Peacekeeping operations for their high level of professionalism, dedication and courage.

UN Peacekeeping has been developed to help countries torn by conflict create conditions for lasting peace since the first mission was established in May 1948. There have been a total of 67 UN peacekeeping operations. Currently, the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, with the support of the Department of Field Support, manages 17 operations deployed across five continents. These operations comprise more than 121,000 deployed military, police and civilian personnel.

Who provides peacekeepers? The UN has no standing army or police force of its own, and Member States are asked to contribute military and police personnel required for each operation. Peacekeepers wear their countries' uniform and are identified as UN Peacekeepers only by a UN blue helmet or beret and a badge.

There are three basic principles that continue to set UN Peacekeeping operations apart as a tool for maintaining international peace and security. These three principles are inter-related and mutually reinforcing: consent of the parties; impartiality; non-use of force except in self-defence and defence of the mandate.

How much does peacekeeping cost? While decisions about establishing, maintaining or expanding a peacekeeping operation are taken by the Security Council, the financing of UN Peacekeeping operations is the collective responsibility of all UN Member States.

> Read more about the day
> Related events
> Related infographic

Thank a Peacekeeper Campaign

Online, 29 May - 21 September 2012
Hosts / Sponsors: Better World Campaign, UN Foundation

In recognition of the more than 120,000 United Nations peacekeepers working to promote peace and security worldwide, the Better World Campaign launched its 2012 "Thank a Peacekeeper" campaign. The campaign commences in anticipation of International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers on 29 May, and will collect messages of thanks from people around the world through 21 September — the International Day of Peace.

Please visit the Better World Campaign website and watch the related peacekeeping video and send a letter of thanks to United Nations Peacekeepers.

> Read more and thank a UN Peacekeeper

Discussion on Gender Equality and Climate Change

Online, 29 May - 8 June 2012
Hosts / Sponsors: Wikigender, Gendernet (OECD)

The Wikigender/Gendernet online discussion will kick off on 29 May and last until 8 June. As the Wikigender community, your comments will be collated into a summary report and presented at the Development Assistance Committee (DAC) Gendernet meeting as an introduction to the 14 June workshop on gender equality, climate change and green growth.

The primary objective of the Gendernet workshop in Paris is to increase Gendernet members' understanding of issues related to climate change and green growth in developing countries so that they can better advise on the gender equality/women's empowerment dimensions of agency approaches to these issues.

This Wikigender discussion provides an opportunity for researchers, donors, civil society, Wikigender partners and interested public to provide their insights into this issue by responding to the following question: How can gender equality be better integrated into climate change policies and programmes in order to ensure sustainable development?

> Read more and join the discussion

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