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New York Launch of World Atlas of Gender Equality in Education

©© UNESCO/Olivia Scaramuzza

The first World Atlas of Gender Equality in Education, a comprehensive overview of the progress, as well as remaining gaps in gender equality at all educational levels, was launched today in New York on 27 March 27.

“This Global Atlas allows us to examine gender equality from different perspectives and illustrates the extent to which gender disparities in education have changed since 1970,” said UNESCO Assistant Director-General for External Relations and Public Information, Eric Falt, who welcomed Permanent Representatives, UN officials, educator and media to the conference and discussion held at the Permanent Mission of Brunei Darussalam at the United Nations.  

“The education of girls and women is important, not only as a matter of respecting a basic human right for half of the population, but as a powerful force for economic development and achieving other social goals such as improved health and civic involvement,” said Falt.

The World  Atlas of Gender Equality in Education, which analyses trends in a broad ranges of key areas including school enrolment at all levels, the increased world demand for quality education, and how policies affect gender equality in education, was also launched at UNESCO Headquarters on the occasion of International Women’s Day. 

An overview and analysis of the Atlas, which includes more than 120 maps, charts and tables featuring a wide range of sex-disaggregated indicators produced by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics, UIS, was presented by Albert Motivans, Head of Educational Statistics at the Montreal –based UNESCO Institute for Statistics.

“Gender equality is understood more broadly as the right to obtain meaningful education outcomes that ensure that education benefits translate into greater participation in social, economic and political development of their societies, “Motivans said,  emphasizing the crucial role of statistical data for monitoring and evaluating progress in gender parity in education. 

“UN Women congratulates UNESCO for the first World Atlas of Gender Equality in Education. It gives us an excellent overview of progress and gaps in gender equality in education. A clear picture of what is happening and good data is critical for gender-responsive policy design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation in the education sector, ” said  Moez Doraid, Director, Coordination Division of UN Women, who participated in the launch. “The World Atlas shows that significant progress has been achieved in women’s and girl’s equal access to education at all levels. But that this achievement remains restricted in many parts of the world.”

The Atlas is designed to enable readers to visualize the educational pathways of girls and boys in terms of access, participation and progression from pre-primary to tertiary education. It also illustrates the extent to which gender disparities in education have changed since 1970 and are shaped by factors such as national wealth, geographic location, investment in education and fields of study.

 “The Atlas that we are launching today is a call for action as UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova has described it,“ said Doraid. “UN Women joins you today to stress the need to take action in light of the findings presented in the ATLAS. With UNESCO’s leadership we are keen to work together to close the gaps in gender equality in education.”


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