Technical Cooperation

Technical Cooperation Programmes

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Strengthening national mechanisms for gender equality and the empowerment of women


UN Women, in collaboration with the United Nations regional commissions, and with support from the Government of Italy, is implementing a multi-year project that aims to strengthen the collaboration and synergies between different mechanisms at national level to facilitate achievement of the goals of gender equality and the empowerment of women. The project will increase knowledge of different types of mechanisms for gender equality and women’s empowerment established at national level since 1995; increase understanding of priorities and strategies for strengthened collaboration and synergies between mechanisms for gender equality and women’s empowerment across regions; and increase capacity (skills and tools) of national mechanisms to collaborate at national and regional levels.

The project uses the following working definition: ‘national mechanisms for gender equality’ include those bodies and institutions within different branches of the State (legislative, executive and judicial branches) as well as independent, accountability and advisory bodies that, together, are recognized as ‘national mechanisms for gender equality’ by all stakeholders. They may include, but not be limited to:

  • the national machinery for the advancement of women within Government (i.e., the more traditional national machinery referred to paragraph 201 of the Beijing Platform for Action, such as a Ministry, Department, or Office) 
  • inter-ministerial bodies (e.g. task forces/working groups or similar arrangements)
  • advisory/consultative bodies, with multi-stakeholder participation 
  • gender equality ombudspersons
  • parliamentary committees
  • gender equality observatories.

Phase 1, May 2009 to March 2010:

1.         Preparation of five regional studies, covering Africa (Economic Commission for Africa); Asia and the Pacific (Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific); Europe (Economic Commission of Europe);  Latin America and the Caribbean (Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean); and Western Asia (Economic Commission for Western Asia).
The studies provide an analytical overview of the evolution of diverse national mechanisms, identifying major trends over time (since 1995) and highlighting changes since 2005 in the development of the national mechanisms for gender equality. They analyse both enabling and constraining factors for the achievement of the goals of national mechanisms for gender equality, identify constraints and challenges, and make recommendations for addressing these.

The regional studies are based on responses to a questionnaire [ Arabic | English | Russian | Spanish ], use of existing literature and secondary sources, and interviews with selected stakeholders. 

Click here for the regional studies:
ECA (forthcoming)

2.         Preparation of a global synthesis study. The study integrates the findings of the regional studies. It analyses the trends in the evolution of the mechanisms in terms of their structure, mandate, role/function and main areas of work. It explores how the various mechanisms coordinate and collaborate with each other as well as with other stakeholders. It elaborates the achievements as well as the constraints and challenges of the mechanisms. Finally, based on the findings, the study recommends a few priority actions for the future.

» Click here for the study (PDF, 594 KB)

3.         Panel presentation of the preliminary global synthesis study to the Commission on the Status of Women during the commemoration of the 15th anniversary of the adoption of the Platform for Action, in March 2010.

On 11 March the Commission held an interactive expert panel on “The evolving status and role of national mechanisms for gender equality”. Ms. Rounaq Jahan presented the major findings and recommendations (Executive Summary) of the global synthesis study on Strengthening National Mechanisms for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women.
(Click here to see the Webcast: archived video webcast of the interactive expert panel).

Background documents:

Phase 2, July 2010 to December 2011

Development of capacity building materials for national mechanisms

Phase 3, 2012/2013

Project evaluation and presentation of results.  


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