This year’s priority theme is the challenges and achievements in the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals to promote gender equality and empower women and girls.
“The international community has succeeded in reducing child mortality, which is clearly a success. On the other hand, I am concerned about the setbacks in the struggle for a woman to have the right to decide over her own body. This is an issue that the Nordic countries have fought for in the UN and which we do not intend to give up”, say Eygló Harðardóttir, Chair of the Nordic Council of Ministers for Gender Equality 2014.
The Nordic countries are consistently in the top ten of the global gender equality index. On 13 March the Nordic Council of Ministers and the Nordic Consulates General will highlight the Nordic model for gender equality at an evening event in the UN headquarters. Using lectures, films and a panel debate, the event will investigate the opportunities for finding solutions for other countries in the world.
Stereotypes put obstacles in the way
In a joint panel discussion on 12 March on the theme Promoting Gender Equality and Empowering Women and Girls Through Education the Nordic ministers will share their experiences of strategic decisions, policies and concrete measures to get women and girls to consider natural science and technology to a greater extent when choosing their profession and to increase the number of women in senior positions.
On 13 March the Nordic Council of Ministers will take over Scandinavia House with the expert panel Do Everything: Break Stereotypes when Choosing Education and Work. The seminar will focus on the different challenges and obstacles to gender equality in education and working life that the Nordic Region still struggles with. The main focus will be on the fact that young people continue to make gender-stereotyped choices at all levels in education.
“In Iceland, we do not, for example, have one single male midwife today, in Denmark only a very few men have chosen this profession – and that is just one example. Everyone wins from breaking unnecessary stereotypes”, says Eygló Harðardóttir.