Happening now: Gender Equality Index: the way forward- online discussion
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On 13 June 2013, the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) launched the first ever comprehensive index for measuring gender equality across Europe specifically within the main areas of the EU policy framework. The Gender Equality Index is a unique tool that synthesises the multi-dimensional complexity of gender equality into a user-friendly and easily interpretable measure. The Index consists of six core domains: work, money, power, knowledge, time and health and two satellite domains: intersecting inequalities and violence. It is versatile tool – providing comparative results at both Member State and EU level. For the first time, European policy-makers can now measure and compare performance, identify gaps and respond with appropriate policies and measures.
The Gender Equality Index is not a static tool. The intention is to build on the current Index by exploring potential new indicators, by filling the empty satellite domains, and by researching ways of linking the gender-indicators to other economic and social indicators to reveal new information to guide policy making. With this in mind, EIGE wants to engage with experts – researchers and statisticians and those who use statistical indicators in their work – in an open and inclusive discussion on the Gender Equality Index and how it might be both broadened and deepened. This two-day long, four-session discussion forum will be held on the EuroGender online platform. Through this discussion, EIGE wants both to build a community of interest for the success of the Index, and to share valuable contacts, insights and experience that will help develop the Index in the future.
As an open event, it is not possible to say beforehand where the online exchanges and contributions will lead – this will depend on the participants. However, to stimulate exchanges we will post topics for discussion that reflect EIGE’s concerns. Examples are:
As part of its work programme, the Institute needs to develop the area of violence. What indicators related to gender-based violence, norms, attitudes and stereotypes should be included? How to use the empty domain as a driver to collect data, produce and disseminate statistics on these forms of gender-based violence?
The satellite domain of intersecting inequalities provides opportunities to add new perspectives to the overall Gender Equality Index. What areas in this domain should be prioritised? What are potential indicators? What data needs to be collected, and what statistics produced and disseminated to capture different intersectional groups?
Increasing the scope of measuring gender equality
There is scope to add some satellite accounts to the structure of the Gender Equality Index. What is currently missing Gender Equality Index in its measure of gender equality? What indicators are available and should be considered to measure the missing aspects?
Improvements to the existing structure
In the current structure, work-life balance is not measured as part of quality of work. Furthermore, two sub-domains remain empty – health behaviour and social power. What are potential indicators to fill these gaps? What technical difficulties are there and how can they be overcome?
EIGE wants to have the widest participation possible from across the European Union. The forum will be moderated and facilitated – although these will be background roles. In addition, EIGE staff who worked on its design and construction will be taking part in the discussion – to answer questions, get new ideas and to learn from others’ experiences and insights. An important outcome of the forum for EIGE will be a broader and active network of gender practitioners (policy makers, civil servants, statisticians, academics, social partners, civil society leaders, etc.) who can contribute to its work for the future. Benefits for participants include the opportunities to network across Europe, to share ideas directly with EIGE staff and to make a real contribution to the future success of the Gender Equality Index.