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Back | Programme Area: Gender and Development (2000 - 2009), Special Events (2000 - 2009) | Event: Ford Foundation Launch - UNRISD Report on Gender Equality: Striving for Justice in an Unequal World

Ford Foundation Launch - UNRISD Report on Gender Equality: Striving for Justice in an Unequal World

  • Date: 7 Mar 2005
  • Location: Auditorium, Ford Foundation Building, 320 E. 43rd St., New York, USA
  • Speakers: Amina Mama, Diane Elson, Anne Marie Goetz, Pregs Govender, Amrita Basu, Deniz Kandiyoti, Ching Kwan Lee, Frances Lund, Thandika Mkandawire , Shahra Razavi, Stephanie Seguino, Onalenna Doo Selolwane, Rosalba Todaro
  • Project Title: Policy Report on Gender and Development: 10 Years after Beijing

Speech by Diane Elson

From Diane Elson's speech...

"It’s great to be here, to see so many old friends and to meet some new ones. I want to begin by congratulating Shahra and the whole team that have put this report together. I had the privilege of being on the advisory committee for this report. We had some very stimulating meetings in Geneva, but at the end of the first one, we thought: “Yes, they have got the money. They have mobilized a great team. But have they got the time?” And we were a little sceptical as to whether they would be able to produce a report in time, a substantial report. But I think they definitely have achieved this. I really want to congratulate everyone who has been involved in writing this report; in putting this report together; in writing background papers for it; because it is a very substantial resource, which all of us will be able to use as we struggle for gender equality in an unequal world.

A major message coming out of this report is the limitations to striving for gender equality in an unequal world; and how we have to combine our struggles for gender equality with a struggle for a more equal world. This means we have to make alliances with other movements that are also struggling for a more equal world; but within those alliances we always going to have to struggle still, the struggle within the struggle, to transform the thinking of those who are proposing alternatives; to make sure that a gender perspective is incorporated into those alternatives.

This UNRISD report, in the way that it deals with the problems of macroeconomic policy that Noeelen Heyzer has highlighted, is going to be a very useful resource for bringing about that transformation. The report summarizes the problems that we are finding in the world, in countries that are dominated by neo-liberal macroeconomics. It acknowledges the gains of that approach, which is the decline of inflation; but it stresses that now inflation is conquered, and we need to move on to other objectives and other problems."