UN Women, Partners Launch Coalition to Empower Women through Innovation, Technology
Photo by IISD/ENB | Kiara Worth
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UN Women has launched the Global Innovation Coalition for Change (GICC).

The partnership aims to make innovation and technology work better for young women and girls, with the broader aim of advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment.

14 September 2017: UN Women has launched a partnership to advance gender equality and women’s empowerment through innovation and technology. The Global Innovation Coalition for Change (GICC) aims to promote actions that make innovation and technology work better for young women and girls.

The GICC will build market awareness of the potential for innovations that meet women’s needs through research and advocacy and identify industry-specific barriers that inhibit the advancement of women and girls in innovation, technology and entrepreneurship. The initiative will then work to address these barriers by sharing good practices, developing capacity and investing in specific innovations through targeted support.

UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka stressed that the the GICC and similar innovation and technology partnerships can “creatively disrupt the status quo.”

In a press release announcing the launch, UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka emphasized that innovation and technology can “break women out of isolation” and create a market for their innovative ideas and products. She stressed that the the GICC and other similar partnerships can “creatively disrupt the status quo.” For example, according to UN Women, bridging the gender gap in mobile phone ownership and usage could help women access education, health and financial services, and unlock approximately US$170 billion in market opportunities for the mobile industry by 2020. However, several barriers limit the understanding of women’s access to and usage of innovation and technology, including under-representation of women in STEM-related fields, a gender-bias in research and lack of gender-disaggregated data.

UN Women launched the GICC on 14 September, in New York, US, on the sidelines of the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly’s (UNGA) annual General Debate. The GICC includes 22 partners from the private sector, academia and non-governmental organizations. [UN News Story] [UN Women News Story] [GICC Website] [Background Paper for GICC Inaugural Event]


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