Despite the leaps and bounds made over the past century, it is clear there is still a long way to go to achieve global gender equality. Inequality still impacts the way women and girls travel, work, play and live in urban environments. Recently, movements such as #TimesUp and #MeToo have brought a renewed awareness of women’s voices and gender power dynamics. But what does this have to do with the city? What do we know about the urban dimensions of gender-based inequalities? How can cities deliver on the European Union (EU) Fundamental Rights and the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), to empower women and girls?
Gender Equal Cities is an initiative from the URBACT Knowledge Hub raising awareness of gender-based inequalities at a local level and highlighting how cities can take action. It brings together the knowledge of women active in the URBACT community and beyond. By reaching out to cities, participating in EU events and facilitating expert exchange, URBACT translated existing knowledge into clear, actionable recommendations, highlighting the experience of European frontrunners.
The work has been enriched by a close partnership with the Council of European Municipalities and Regions and the results of their European Charter for Equality of Women and Men in Local Life. Gender Equal Cities shows how creating space for women’s voices, needs and capacities is a necessary step towards building thriving cities. The report themes mirror city departments and sectors, providing practical guides for professionals who work both in specific policy-areas and across sectors. It is relevant for citizens and citizen organisations too, to help them inspire and support their local administrations.