Building peace in the minds of men and women

Launch of Feasibility Study for Global Observatory on Women and Sport

27 September 2019

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© UNESCO / Sudipto Das - Spirit of soccer

A Feasibility Study on the establishment of a Global Observatory for Women, Sport, Physical Education and Physical Activity was launched officially on 26 September 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland, on the occasion of the first meeting of the Steering Committee established for the implementation of Action 4 of the Kazan Action Plan (KAP). The KAP, a framework linking sport and physical education to the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development, was adopted in 2017 by the Sixth World Conference of Sport Ministers, MINEPS VI.

UNESCO places gender equality (achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls) as one of its two institutional priorities and commits fully to contributing to the realization of Sustainable Development Goal 5 of the 2030 Agenda - Gender Equality. Overcoming global and systemic inequalities against girls and women in sport and society is not only paramount to promoting human rights in sport but also a powerful means to ensure gender equality universally.

Within the framework of the KAP, UNESCO promotes the empowerment of girls and women in and through physical education, physical activity and sport at all levels, from childhood to lifelong physical literacy, elite sport participation and leadership in sport governing bodies. It is necessary to ensure that education systems play a critical role in providing equal access to sport and in overcoming gender-based stereotypes. Safeguarding women and girls participating in physical education, physical activity and sport is a serious concern that needs to be addressed systematically.

The Government of the Swiss Confederation, which will host the future Observatory, is committed to leading Action 4 of the KAP – Conduct a feasibility study on the establishment of a Global Observatory for Women, Physical Education and Sport. Under the overall coordination of UNESCO, the study is structured around three main components: expertise in the field of women and sport; project management and the determination of the main elements of a business plan; as well as advice on communication and information management.

During this first meeting, the Steering Committee set the overall framework for the elaboration of the feasibility study and its timeline. The study will determine the main rationale, functions, priority activities, governance and operational set-up of the Observatory. The underlying vision for the Observatory is decentralized and inclusive ensuring participation and shared ownership by relevant UN and multilateral institutions, public authorities of member states, the sports and para sports movements, academia, civil society and the business community. Based on broad consultation and mobilization of key partners, the study will be finalized in spring 2020.

The Steering Committee is composed of: