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IGC: The Year So Far

IGC: The Year So Far

Impact January – July 2017

Before the summer break we thought it would be useful to take stock of what we have accomplished in the first half of 2017 including:

The launch of 3 new IGC Hubs 

  •  New York 
  •  Vienna 
  •  Bonn-Berlin 

Publication of our first book

  • a joint IGC – UN Women publication                                                                                                 "Raising Women's Voices in Intergovernmental Forums"

Creation of 4 Geneva Impact Groups

  • Representation     Co-Chaired by Ambassador Veronika Bard, Sweden; Director-General Guy Ryder, International Labour Organization; Ambassador Suraya Dalil, Afghanistan
  • Change Management   Co-Chaired by Ambassador Julian Braithwaite, UK; Deputy Executive Director UNAIDS, Jan Beagle   (who moved to New York July 1 to become UN Under Secretary General of Management)
  • Trade   Co-Chaired by Ambassador Hogni Kristjansson, Iceland; Executive Director Arancha González, International Trade Centre; Ambassador Yvette Stevens, Sierra Leone
  • Health   Co-Chaired by Ambassador Beatriz Londoño Soto, Colombia; Anne-Sophie Lois, Plan International

Convening, Receptions, Events, Reviews

  • 16 convening of Champion & Working Group Impact Groups
  • 2 Champion Receptions:  
    • Foreign Minister Margot Wallström, Sweden
    • President Michelle Bachelet, Chile
  • 1 Champion Mid-Term Review
  • 3 ALL Geneva Focal Point Meetings2 New York Focal Point Meetings; 1 Vienna Focal Point Meeting
  •  5 Geneva Brown Bag Events
  • Onboarding of our first Sports Federation Gender Champions including the Director-General of the International Olympic Committee  Christophe De Kepper, and heads of World Sailing, World Equestrian, and Archery.


GROUP OF FRIENDS We began the year with a meeting of the Group of Friends, a group of Champions from each of our tri partite groups including co-founders Director-General Michael Møller of UNOG, Ambassador Pam Hamamoto of US Mission, and CEO/Founder Caitlin Kraft-Buchman of Women@theTable/w@tt , and Ambassador Veronika Bard of Sweden; Guy Ryder, Director-General ILO; Ambassador Yvette Stevens Sierra Leone; Executive Director Arancha González International Trade Centre; Director-General, Scott Weber Interpeace; and Anne-Sophie Lois of Plan International. We made plans for our new Impact Groups, and bid fond farewell to Ambassador Hamamoto rotating off the Group as she was leaving Geneva, and welcoming Ambassador Bard of Sweden who accepted our offer to take on greater leadership responsibilities within the IGC network.

IMPACT GROUPS were created for the new year, led by Champions to create mandate and movement, and thematically chosen to maximize strategic opportunities they are:

Representation Co Chaired by Sweden, ILO, Afghanistan

Change Management co chaired by UK, UNAIDS

Trade co chaired by Iceland, ITC, and Sierra Leone

Health co chaired by Colombia and Plan International

Impact groups are open to all Champions.

Health Impact Group met several times with an expanded group drafting a Call to Action for ……

They convened a Breakfast of the EB of WHO whosigned the Call To Action, a vcopy of which was published simultaneously in The Lancet

Trade Impact Group met for an action plan Brainstorm, deciding to convene an expanded group of Champions and WTO Ambassadors interested in Gender and Trade.

New Hub In New York, the IGC New York group led by Ambassador Jürg Lauber and the Swiss Mission in New York prepared for the New York hard launch in March during CSW, and convened Focal Points for a 28 person strong breakfast to talk about aims for the IGC group


Focal Point Meeting Geneva All Hands convened for the first all Focal Point Quarterly meeting of 2017. Hosted by UNOG.

Trade Impact Group Lunch with 12 WTO Ambassadors and trade negotiators beginning a dynamic discussion on gender and trade.

Sports Federations Convened by Switzerland representatives of 25 Sports Federations including the International Olympic Committee, Equestrian, Sailing, Archery, Basketball, Olympic Summer games met in Lausanne to hear about International Gender Champions and potential collaborations with the world of sport.


All Champions Meeting Foreign Minister HE Margot Wallstrom, Sweden becomes our first Honorary Gender Champion with her speech "What Difference Does a Feminist Foreign Policy Make?"

An address to the International Gender Champions at a Reception Hosted at WIPO by Champion, DG Francis Gurry. The evening brought tougher the Champions and female judges, parliamentarians, ministers and Mayors attending the first Breakthrough Barriers Summit in Geneva.

Global Health Event: Convened by the Global Health Center, (part of our Champion Graduate Institute for Development and International Studies), all three WHO Director-General candidates speak about their plans for the future, including gender in their internal and external work.

Brown Bag Lunch: a gathering for focal points. Hosted at UNOG.

International Women’s Day: events with IGC, UNOG, Switzerland and International Sporting Federations

Opening of CSW in New York: UN Secretary-General António Guterres opens the Committee on the Status of Women with a speech that encourages other senior leaders to join the International Gender Champions

IGC-New York Launch at the Delegates Room with Special Guest UN Secretary-General António Guterres, UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Azadeh Khalili, NYC Commission on Gender Equity, Caitlin Kraft-Buchman, Women@theTable. Moderated by Ambassador Jürg Lauber, Switzerland.

Representation Impact Group brainstorm with Champions and Civil Society at the Swedish Mission in Geneva.

IGC Honorary Champion: President Michelle Bachelet of Chile ! President Bachelet becomes an Honorary Gender Champion at an event hosted by IGC Champion François Longchamp, President of the Canton de Genève.

International Women’s Day: in collaboration with Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the UN in Geneva, a luncheon for Gender Champions and Heads of International Sports Federations

  • Christophe De Kepper, International Olympic Committee Director-General
  • Moderator  BBC journalist David Eades
  • Ms. Marisol Casado, International Triathlon Union President and Member of the IOC Commission on women in sports
  • Ms. Rossella Pagliuchi-Lor, UNHCR Director of External Relations Division
  • Ms. Linda Kromjong, IOE Secretary-General and International Gender Champion
  • Ms. Majken Gilmartin, CEO Eir Soccer / Global Goals World Cup - Play for Change
  • Ms. Myrian Baverel, Olympic Taekwondo medallist

OUR FIRST BOOK LAUNCH! A joint publication between IGC & UN Women

"Shaping the International Agenda: Raising Women’s Voices in Intergovernmental Forums" How can women have a voice on the international stage? How can we ensure equal participation of women and men at the negotiating and decision-making table?

To fulfil the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including Sustainable Development Goal 5 on achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls, the mission of organisations such as the International Gender Champions and UN-Women is to enable women to participate fully in decision-making and support women’s leadership. Without the equal participation of women in decision-making at all levels, peace, development, human rights and justice cannot be achieved.
This joint publication aims to build knowledge on women’s participation in national delegations to meetings of international organizations’ governing bodies and their leadership roles in these meetings. Join us for this event and hear our experts talk about concrete recommendations on the way forward to realize gender balance in intergovernmental forums

Panel at UN Library Geneva,

  • Michael Møller, Director-General United Nations Office at Geneva
  •  Martin Chungong, Secretary-General, Inter-Parliamentary Union
  • Ambassador John Quinn, Australia
  • Doreen Bogdan-Martin, Head, Strategic Planning International Telecommunication Union
  • Dr. Jannie Lilja, Swedish Mission
  • Moderator:  Ann Blomberg, UN Women
  • Brown Bag Lunch: Following the launch of "Shaping the International Agenda: Raising Women’s Voices in Intergovernmental Forums"    Using the power of the IGC focal point group to think through how to leverage the publication’s findings into Geneva organisations.


Gender Responsive Standards Convening by UNECE hosted by ITC

What would gender responsive standards look like? Do they exist ? How to optimize or create them?

Trade Impact Group

New York Book Launch "Shaping the International Agenda: Raising Women’s Voices in Intergovernmental Forums" gathers leading figures in the intergovernmental arena to bring greater visibility to the imperative of promoting women’s participation and achieving gender balance in intergovernmental decision-making forums and processes.

  • Introduction and Chair: President of UN-Women’s Executive Board H.E. Ms. Lana Nusseibeh, Permanent Representative of the United Arab Emirates to the United Nations
  • Keynote address: President of the General Assembly H.E. Mr. Peter Thomson
  •  Presentation of the publication’s key findings: UN-Women Deputy Executive Director Ms. Lakshmi Puri                 
  •  Other guests: H.E. Mr. Jürg Lauber, Permanent Representative of Switzerland to the United Nations representing the International Gender Champions – New York
  •    H.E. Mrs. Martha Ama Akyaa Pobee, Permanent Representative of Ghana to the United Nations representing the Group of Friends for Gender Parity, TBC
  •  H.E. Ms. Laura Elena Flores Herrera, Permanent Representative of Panama to the United Nations representing the Group of Friends for Gender Parity

Women in Science Breaking the Cliché convened by

  • Ambassador Elisabeth Laurin, France
  • Fabiola Gianotti, Director-General, CERN
  • Elena Manaekova, Deputy Director General, World Meteorological Organization
  • Dame Julia Slingo, former Chief Scientist, MET Office, UK  
  • Moderator: Caitlin Kraft-Buchman, Women@theTable

Hosted by the World Meteorological Organization, at their HDQ in Geneva


Gender Responsive Standards Web Ex Follow Up Convening

Bonn-Berlin Hub has its soft launch with the UN’s top Climate Change official Patricia Espinosa.

Brown Bag Breakfast: Single Sex Panel Language

When a Champion is asked to sit on a panel how to include correspondence to the organisers letting them know the Champion has taken the IGC Panel Parity Pledge and requesting tha thte organisers consider the gender balance of the panel.

Roundtable Lunch: Strengthening Gender Responsive Language in International For a Special Guests:

  • Dr. Jannie Lilja, Swedish Mission to the UN Geneva,
  • Veronica Birga, Chief Women’s Human Rights + Gender Section, Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights  

Particularly timely event given the number of Governing Body meetings in May and June, and for those Champion groups have made commitments that reference the need to strengthen the language they use in resolutions, statements and other negotiated documents.

Spring IGC-Geneva Focal Point Meeting

With Communications Teams: Sharing Information, Blasting the Network

Focal Points: What’s Happening? Wisdom from the Network

IGC Change Management Impact Group: Towards Gender-Responsive Change Management


  • Tinna Nielsen, Anthropologist, Founder, Move the Elephant.  
  •  Guest Speakers: Change Management Co-Chairs:
  • Ambassador Julian Braithwaite, UK Mission to the UN in Geneva
  •  Deputy Executive Director UN AIDS, Jan Beagle
  •   IGC Co-Founder, Caitlin Kraft-Buchman, Women@theTable.  

Hosted at UN AIDS, Kofi Annan Room

What are the barriers? What’s holding us back from gender parity ? A discussion and solutions. For Human Resources professional, change management and gender focal points across the IGC network.

IGC-Geneva Champions Meeting : Mid Term Review. The Champions twice yearly meeting. Bringing strong solutions that are working. And obstacles that are difficult.

Hosted by UNOG in the Cinema Room

Launch of the Global Gender & Environment Outlook

  • Jan Dusik, Director, Europe Office, UN Environment,
  • Joni SEAGER, author Global Gender Outlook, Chair Global Studies Department Bentley University, Boston
  • Elena VILLALOBOS PRATS, Climate Change and Health, World Health Organization
  • Sarah LEUGERS, Gold Standard
  • Seline MEIJER, People in Nature (PiN) initiative, IUCN  
  • Moderated by Caitlin Kraft-Buchman, Women@theTable  

An open air event and breakfast in the fields outside the Maison de la Paix, Geneva


GENEVA Representation Impact Group:  Ensuring Equal Representation Event

Side Event at the Human Rights Council with Champions & Activists, including:

  • Director-General Michael Møller, UNOG
  • Ambassador Veronika Bard, Sweden
  • Ambassador Suraya Dalil, Afghanistan
  • Ambassador Julian Braithwaite, UK
  • Ambassador Beatriz Londoño Soto, Colombia
  • Director-General Scott Weber, Interpeace
  • YWCA Youth Forum Activists from DRC, Colombia, Myanmar & Sierra Leone

VIENNA official launch of the IGC network in Vienna !

  • With 52 leaders in Vienna
  • Led by Ambassador Pilar Saborío de Rocafort, Costa Rica
  • Ambassador Andrej Benedejcic,  Slovenia
  • Chargé d’Affaires Andrew Schofer
  • Director-General of the UN Office in Vienna, Yuri Fedotov,
  • senior leaders from the International Atomic Energy Agency
  • United Nations Industrial Development Organization
  • Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization
  • UN Office of Outer Space Affairs
  • Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

In the Rotunda of UN in Vienna


Brown Bag Reception: new CEDAW Chairperson Professor Dalia Leinarte

An event to strengthen ties & understanding of CEDAW's work as CEDAW begins its session Monday, 3 July in Geneva.

Change management: How to Sustain Gender-responsive Change
One month after we met to ‘Nudge the unconscious mind for gender equality’, this exclusive event on how to sustain gender-responsive brings together Change Management Experts, Gender Focal Points and Senior HR colleagues for an interactive, action-oriented discussion as part of the UNLOCK Peer Exchange meeting in Geneva.

Aid for Trade Events at the WTO:

Launch of the Trade and Gender Toolbox

"What would happen to women if a given trade policy were implemented?" - UNCTAD's presentation of the Trade and Gender Toolbox sponsored by Sweden, during a side-event of the Aid for Trade Global Review.

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