Gender Equity Index
The Gender Equity Index (GEI) was introduced by the Social Watch in 2004 to measure inequities in different areas of women’s and men’s everyday lives around the world. The 2008 GEI ranks 157 countries by measuring women’s relative economic activity, education and empowerment. According to the GEI, in no country do women enjoy the same opportunities as men, irrespective of a country’s income level. Although over the years some aspects of women’s situation have improved their opportunities in economic and political areas are still clearly limited.
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Composition of the Indicator
The GEI includes three dimensions:
- economic activity
- empowerment and
The index’s range of values is from 0 to 100, with lower values indicating greater inequity and higher values greater equity.
2008 Results of the GEI
Sweden , Finland and Norway continue to have the highest rankings in the 2008 GEI. Although the three countries do not lead in all the dimensions that make up the index, they have good performances in all of them. Germany ranks forth and Rwanda — one of the poorest countries in the world – takes the fifth place. The GEI shows that income differences between countries are no justification for gender-based inequities. Many poor countries have achieved high level of equity, which is a positive achievement, even when that means an equitable distribution of poverty.
2007 Results of the GEI
Sweden, Finland, Rwanda and Norway occupied the highest positions in the 2007 GEI. This good performance has been achieved by the application of Affirmative action policies, particularly for political quota legislation and labor market equity.
The 2007 GEI presents information on 40 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, 36 in Europe, 28 in Latin America and the Caribbean, 19 in the Women in the Middle East and North Women and African Economic Development (MENA), 18 in East Asia and the Pacific, 6 in Central Asia, 5 in South Asia and 2 in North America. Together these countries represent more than 90% of the world’s population.