There is much to celebrate, this International Women’s Day. Three fabulously courageous women won last year’s Nobel Peace Prize, and just a year earlier the United Nations established UN Women, a new agency dedicated to gender equality worldwide and headed by another strong woman leader and role model, former President of Brazil Michelle Bachelet. School enrollments of girls are unprecedentedly high, the world has finally begun to mobilize around safe childbirth and other women’s health issues, and the World Bank is reporting this week that we have achieved the first Millennium Development Goal (MDG), halving extreme poverty, well before the United Nations’ 2015 deadline, thereby easing the lives of hundreds of millions worldwide. Yet a tremendous amount of work waits to be done.
Earth’s population has more than doubled in the last 50 years to 7 billion. The numbers represent big challenges—feeding and providing for additional people on a planet already stressed by environmental damage and climate change. What can ordinary individuals do?
In many areas of sub-Saharan Africa, gender parity tends to decline at higher levels of schooling. While girls’ enrollment and completion rates for primary school are typically high, these rates decrease with secondary and tertiary education. Girls may discontinue their studies to devote more time to household chores, to earn extra income by engaging in [...]
Just how pervasive is gender inequality across sub-Saharan Africa? This topic is particularly timely today, March 8, designated International Women’s Day by the United Nations. Despite the valiant efforts of many government officials, international and local non-governmental organizations and women’s advocates, in many areas of sub-Saharan Africa, women do not yet enjoy equal status with [...]