On 2 December 2022, the Advocacy and Research Group (ARG) of the NGO Committee on the Status of Women, New York (NGO CSW/NY) finalized their Five Key Recommendations for the sixty-seventh session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW67) to be considered by Member States for the Zero Draft. These recommendations address the CSW67 priority theme of “Innovation and technological change, education in the digital age for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls." The introductory paragraph reads, in part, “As a result of consulting with over 700 individuals of our global, grassroots community, including members of the global NGO CSWs, to understand their lived experiences, we have identified these critical concerns… Women and girls should be included in the leadership and decision-making processes for the implementation of all five of these recommendations.” Because the Zero Draft serves as the negotiated text for the outcome document, which will be created in March 2023, the ARG hopes its recommendations will provide civil society input and offer points for governments to consider as they prepare their positions.
In summary, the five recommendations are to: (1) increase digital literacy skills and STEM education; (2) address and protect the digital privacy and safety and human rights of women and girls in all their diversity; (3) ensure accessibility of digital technology for older women and women with disabilities; (4) enhance official development assistance commitments, improve public finance and make digital technology affordable; and (5) focus particularly on engaging girls and young women in all of the above.
Five Key Recommendations
increase digital literacy skills and STEM education
address and protect the digital privacy and safety and human rights of women and girls in all their diversity
ensure accessibility of digital technology for older women and women with disabilities
enhance official development assistance commitments, improve public finance and make digital technology affordable
focus particularly on engaging girls and young women in all of the above
The ARG consists of a core team of 33 members who represent civil society organizations from each of the five global regions. Ivy Koek of SGI and Ani Karapetyan of the Armenian International Women's Association are its Co-chairs. While compiling its recommendations, the group made a concerted effort to ensure the process was inclusive and participatory. In August 2022, the ARG conducted a survey that gathered data from over 700 respondents globally. Consultations averaging more than 200 participants each were held at the NGO CSW/NY virtual monthly meetings, together with the Global Advocacy Committee that consists of the leadership of seven regional NGO CSWs.
The first consultation was held at the September 2022 meeting, where the ARG core team members at the NGO CSW/NY presented the survey results and shared the top eight themes across regions. From these eight themes, meeting participants were asked to pick their top five. At the October 2022 meeting, the consolidated five topics were presented and participants shared their approaches to advocacy at the UN. During the November 2022 meeting, the five draft recommendations were shared with the audience for their feedback and suggestions. Koek shared, “We were deliberate in our efforts to be as collaborative and inclusive as possible in drafting the recommendations. We tried to engage a diverse group of advocates and experts. It is not easy for such a wide range of constituents to agree on any one position; this takes great effort, which speaks to its significance.” Individuals or organizations can support the ARG’s Key Recommendations for the CSW67 Zero Draft by signing this form.
At the UN
NGO CSW/NY Meetings Examine Outcomes from CSW66 and Celebrate 50 Years