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UNESCO Future Forum on Gender Equality to be held in Athens (Greece) from 9-11 September
The event will be opened by UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova, the Greek Minister for Culture Pavlos Geroulanos and the Chairperson of the Hellenic National Commission for UNESCO Ekaterina Papachristopoulou Tzitzikova, as well as other high-level international personalities including the Chairperson of UNESCO’s Executive Board Eleonora Mitrofanova (Russian Federation); United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro; Spanish Minister of Equality Bibiana Aido Almagros; Egyptian Minister of State for Family and Population Affairs Moushira Mahmoud Khattab; Minister of Education and Science of the Republic of Latvia Tatjana Koke; Vice-President of the Italian Senate Emma Bonino; and Education for All–Fast Track Initiative Chair and former UNICEF Executive Director Carol Bellamy (USA).
The UNESCO Future Forum will be divided into four sessions: The strategic role of gender equality for development (10 September, 10 am-1 pm); Women: victims of violence, architects of peace? (10 September, 2.30-4.30 pm); Gender equality and environmental challenges (10 September, 4.30-6.30 pm); Closing session: the role of UNESCO as a promoter of change through education, science, culture, communication and information (11 September, 10 am-1pm).
Numerous international personalities, experts, government representatives, non-governmental organizations, private sector representatives, academics and journalists will participate, including Saskia Sassen (USA), Professor of Sociology at Columbia and guest professor at the London School of Economics; Claudie Haigneré (France), President of Universcience, Palais de la découverte and the Cité des Sciences, former Minister of Research and Technology and of European Affairs; Zhili Chen, President of the National Federation of Women in China; Aminata Traoré, President of the Forum for another Mali and former Minister of Culture; and Josephine Guissou Ouédraogo (Burkina Faso), Executive Secretary of ENDA Tiers-Monde in Dakar.
This Future Forum is one of a series aimed at fostering reflection on key future-oriented issues in UNESCO’s fields of action. The conference comes at a critical moment, five years from the target date set for the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Education For All goals. Women represent two-thirds of the world’s 796 million illiterate adults; they are also affected disproportionately by the food and economic crises of 2008. In this light, the Forum aims to renew mobilisation and awareness regarding the link between gender equality, development and peace, and to anticipate post-2015 challenges.