VAW database

VAW banner gif

Overview of the study

Ending violence against women: From words to action. Study of the Secretary-General (also known as the Secretary-General’s in-depth study on all forms of violence against women) was launched in the General Assembly on 9 October 2006. 

The study aims to:

  • highlight the persistence and unacceptability of all forms of violence against women in all parts of the world;
  • strengthen the political commitment and joint efforts of all stakeholders to prevent and eliminate violence against women; and
  • identify ways and means to ensure more sustained and effective implementation of State obligations to address all forms of violence against women, and to increase State accountability. 

The study:

  • gives an overview of the historical overview of the development of international awareness and action on male violence against women (section II); 
  • sets out the broad context within which violence against women occurs and persists (section III);
  • synthesizes the knowledge regarding the extent and prevalence of different forms and manifestations of violence against women, in the main settings: that is, within the family, the community, and perpetrated or condoned by the State, including in conflict settings; and reviews the consequences of such violence, including its costs of forms and manifestations of violence against women and its consequences, including costs (section IV);
  • discusses the gaps and challenges in the availability of data, including in methodologies for assessing the prevalence of different forms of violence (section V);
  • highlights the responsibilities of States to address and prevent violence against women (section VI);
  • gives examples of promising practices in the areas of law, service provision and prevention (section VII); and
  • puts forward a blueprint for action by all stakeholders—by States, at the national level, and by intergovernmental bodies and UN entities—to make measurable progress in preventing and eliminating violence against women (section VIII).