Gender equality and equity are matters of fundamental human rights and social justice, as well as a pre-condition for sustainable development. IUCN is committed to furthering gender equality and equity in order to build a Union that understands the importance of equal opportunity and inclusion, and whose policies respect diversity.
Founded in 1998, the IUCN Global Gender Office (GGO) contributes towards IUCN’s vision and mission by providing innovative approaches, technical support, policy development and capacity building to a wide range of partners, ensuring gender equality is central to sustainable global environmental solutions. Until early 2013, IUCN GGO was based in Costa Rica, out of the IUCN Mesoamerica (ORMA) office. IUCN GGO now finds its home base in Washington, D.C., however the team is most often found on missions all over the world.
With the Global Senior Gender Advisor, Lorena Aguilar, at the helm since its inception, IUCN GGO enjoys worldwide recognition for its extensive 20-year body of work addressing gender equality issues across various aspects of the environmental sector and in the larger context of ensuring equitable sustainable development. Some of the ongoing initiatives under the IUCN GGO include:
- Building and creating the Environment and Gender Information (EGI) platform, which provides quantitative data to monitor government progress toward gender equality and women’s empowerment in the environmental arena;
- Supporting governments (17 as of October 2015) through processes to create Climate Change Gender Action Plans (ccGAPs), which are nationally recognized strategies with a unique methodology for training and building the capacity of women and women’s organizations on the linkages between gender and climate change;
- Establishing a network of gender and renewable energy experts and knowledge hub via the Gender Equality for Climate Change Opportunities (GECCO) initiative and the associated Gender and Renewable Energy (G-REEN) Platform.
- Fostering unique partnerships and alliances, such as the Global Gender and Climate Alliance (GGCA) and the Network of Women Ministers and Leaders of the Environment; and
- Compiling an extensive Knowledge Center that provides sector-specific, up-to-date and comprehensive information on gender and the environment from the IUCN GGO, as well as its partners, members, and colleagues.