Women's Rights

In low-income and middle-income countries, such as those in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America, the COVID-19 pandemic has had substantial implications for women's wellbeing. Policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic have highlighted the gendered aspect of pandemics; however, addressing the gendered implications of the COVID-19 pandemic comprehensively and effectively requires a planetary health perspective that embraces systems thinking to inequalities.
Elsevier, Journal of Forensic and Legal Medicine, Volume 75, October 2020
Despite legislation, dowry is still widespread in many parts of India and adjacent countries. It refers to the transfer of goods, money, and property to a bridegroom, his parents, or his relatives from a bride's family as a condition of the marriage. One of the consequences of the dowry system has been the murder or abetted suicide of young wives, either because more dowry goods were not provided to her husband or his family, or to secure the goods after marriage. In 2015 7634 women died due to dowry harassment, representing approximately 21 cases per day in India.
In August 2018, the president of the World Bank noted that “‘Human capital’—the potential of individuals—is going to be the most important long-term investment any country can make for its people's future prosperity and quality of life”. Nevertheless, leaders and practitioners in academic science and medicine continue to be unaware of and poorly educated about the nature, extent, and impact of barriers to full participation of women and minorities in science and medicine around the world.
In the past 50 years, significant progress in women's equality has been made worldwide. Western countries, particularly European countries, have implemented initiatives to attain a more gender-balanced workforce with the introduction of family friendly policies, by trying to narrow the gender pay gap and by promoting women's career progression. In academia, however, fewer women reach top leadership positions than those in the political arena. These findings suggest that academia needs to carefully evaluate why these new policies have not been very effective.
Background The Sustainable Development Goals strongly focus on equity. Goal 5 explicitly aims to empower all women and girls, reinforcing the need to have a reliable indicator to track progress. Our objective was to develop a novel women's empowerment indicator from widely available data sources, broadening opportunities for monitoring and research on women's empowerment. Methods We used Demographic and Health Survey data from 34 African countries, targeting currently partnered women.