What is gender-based violence?

Definitions

'Gender-based violence' and 'violence against women' are terms that are often used interchangeably as most gender-based violence is inflicted by men on women and girls. However, it is important to retain the 'gender-based' aspect of the concept as this highlights the fact that violence against women is an expression of power inequalities between women and men. The terms are used interchangeably throughout this website and EIGE's work, as it is always understood that gender-based violence means violence against women and vice versa.

“[G]ender‐based violence against women” shall mean violence that is directed against a woman because she is a woman or that affects women disproportionately[.]
(Art. 3 d, Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence)
“[V]iolence against women” is understood as a violation of human rights and a form of discrimination against women and shall mean all acts of gender‐based violence that result in, or are likely to result in, physical, sexual, psychological or economic harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life[.]
(Art. 3 a, Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence)

Collection of legal definitions of different types of gender-based violence used in EU Member States