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Parliaments and Representatives

Democracy and the equal participation of men and women in the political arena are closely intertwined. No parliament or any decision-making body can claim to be representative without the participation of both men and women. As stated in the Universal Declaration on Democracy adopted by the Inter-Parliamentary Union’s Member Parliaments in 1997, "The achievement of democracy presupposes a genuine partnership between men and women in the conduct of the affairs of society in which they work in equality and complementarity, drawing mutual enrichment from their differences."

Recent years have seen a steady increase in the number of women in parliament, though the world average of less than 22 percent remains far from the goal of parity between women and men. The election of women to the highest positions of state and government in several countries has also contributed to the changing face of politics.

While the road to election is a difficult one, the challenges for women do not stop there. Once women enter parliament or other bodies, they are faced with many new challenges. Parliament is traditionally a male-oriented domain where the rules and practices have been written by men. It is, therefore, an ongoing challenge to transform parliament into a gender-sensitive environment, to ensure that actions are gender-sensitive and to guarantee that gender is mainstreamed throughout the legislature.

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Malaysia: 30% quota for women. Are we there yet?

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Malaysia: 30% quota for women. Are we there yet?

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Recently, the minister responsible for women, family and community development, Nancy Shukri, reportedly said the 30% quota for women previously set by the government should be reconsidered given the current situation that “42% of women actively participated in decision making roles within the public service sector”.

Recently, the minister responsible for women, family and community development, Nancy Shukri, reportedly said the 30% quota for women previously set by the government should be reconsidered given the current situation that “42% of women actively participated in decision making roles within the public service sector”.

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The evolution of women's political leadership: progress, challenges, and triumphs

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The evolution of women's political leadership: progress, challenges, and triumphs

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Women's political leadership is evolving, with both progress and challenges. Inspiring figures like Angela Merkel and Jacinda Ardern have made strides, but achieving gender parity is still over a century away. Local leadership and advocacy play crucial roles in this ongoing journey.

Women's political leadership is evolving, with both progress and challenges. Inspiring figures like Angela Merkel and Jacinda Ardern have made strides, but achieving gender parity is still over a century away. Local leadership and advocacy play crucial roles in this ongoing journey.

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Panel centers Black women on the political landscape

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Panel centers Black women on the political landscape

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In a panel on Feb. 5, Black female scholars from across the country came together to explore the power of Black women in American politics and their nuanced role as actors in the current political climate. The panel titled “Black Women’s Politics,” was hosted by the Women and Gender Studies, African American Studies, and Government departments to commemorate Black History Month. 

In a panel on Feb. 5, Black female scholars from across the country came together to explore the power of Black women in American politics and their nuanced role as actors in the current political climate. The panel titled “Black Women’s Politics,” was hosted by the Women and Gender Studies, African American Studies, and Government departments to commemorate Black History Month. 

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What’s the secret to attracting more women into politics? Give them more resources

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February 9, 2024

What’s the secret to attracting more women into politics? Give them more resources

With Victorian council elections to be held in October, the state government’s target of reaching 50-50 gender representation at the local level is under threat.

With Victorian council elections to be held in October, the state government’s target of reaching 50-50 gender representation at the local level is under threat.

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Advancing gender equality in politics ahead of Georgian elections

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Advancing gender equality in politics ahead of Georgian elections

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Over 150 women local councillors from across Georgia gathered for their annual conference to discuss the increasing role of women in politics and decision-making, especially in the lead-up to elections.

Supported by UNDP and Sweden in partnership with the Gender Equality Council of the Parliament of Georgia, the Women Councillors’ Political Forum brought together representatives from the Government, Parliament, civil society organizations, diplomatic missions, and international agencies.

Over 150 women local councillors from across Georgia gathered for their annual conference to discuss the increasing role of women in politics and decision-making, especially in the lead-up to elections.

Supported by UNDP and Sweden in partnership with the Gender Equality Council of the Parliament of Georgia, the Women Councillors’ Political Forum brought together representatives from the Government, Parliament, civil society organizations, diplomatic missions, and international agencies.

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The struggle for women’s representation in Indonesian politics: an uphill battle

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The struggle for women’s representation in Indonesian politics: an uphill battle

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A Step Forward but Not Enough

In the 2019 general election, Indonesians elected more women into the national parliament than ever before, with women’s representation rising to 20.9%. This increase was attributed to the implementation of a 30% candidate quota for women, which compelled political parties to nominate more women candidates. However, this quota did not lead to equal representation, as more than 20% of electoral districts did not elect any women to parliament.

A Step Forward but Not Enough

In the 2019 general election, Indonesians elected more women into the national parliament than ever before, with women’s representation rising to 20.9%. This increase was attributed to the implementation of a 30% candidate quota for women, which compelled political parties to nominate more women candidates. However, this quota did not lead to equal representation, as more than 20% of electoral districts did not elect any women to parliament.

World News

Australia’s political leaders join UN Women Australia to ‘Count Her In’ this International Women’s Day

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Australia’s political leaders join UN Women Australia to ‘Count Her In’ this International Women’s Day

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Australian government, political and defence force leaders came together at Parliament House this morning to officially launch the Australian celebrations of International Women’s Day – ahead of the UN Global Day of Observance on 8 March.

Australian government, political and defence force leaders came together at Parliament House this morning to officially launch the Australian celebrations of International Women’s Day – ahead of the UN Global Day of Observance on 8 March.

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Advancing women’s political participation and leadership for a resilient, connected and inclusive ASEAN

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Advancing women’s political participation and leadership for a resilient, connected and inclusive ASEAN

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Vientiane, February 5, 2024 – The ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA) and the National Assembly of Lao PDR, holding the AIPA Presidency 2023-2024, are set to host the Women Parliamentarians of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (WAIPA) Events from 5 to 6 February 2024 in Vientiane, Lao PDR.

Vientiane, February 5, 2024 – The ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA) and the National Assembly of Lao PDR, holding the AIPA Presidency 2023-2024, are set to host the Women Parliamentarians of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (WAIPA) Events from 5 to 6 February 2024 in Vientiane, Lao PDR.