A new study shows that countries where women prosper score highest in terms of prosperity, peace, democracy, and tackling the effects of climate change. According to the survey, when women in a society are doing well, everyone benefits. Interestingly, the report reveals that women are valued more in some countries than others, resulting in economic development in the latter countries.
The 2023 Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) Index published by Georgetown University’s Institute for Women, Peace and Security (GIWPS) names Denmark as the best country for women to live.
Denmark, Switzerland, Sweden, Finland, and Luxembourg top the list of the best countries “to be a woman” while Afghanistan, Yemen, and the Central African Republic (CAR) are ranked as the worst-performing countries.
The biennial index, unveiled at the Norwegian Mission to the United Nations in New York earlier this week employs 13 measures to gauge women’s status, such as health, job opportunities, justice, parliamentary representation, economic engagement, and proximity to hostility.
Georgetown University alumna, Elena Ortiz who doubles as the WPS lead author reported that the index reveals that when women prosper, society also prospers. She stated “Countries where women are doing well are more prosperous, peaceful, democratic, and better prepared to respond to the impacts of climate change. When women are doing well, everyone in society is doing well, and our index shows that.”
When women thrive, their nations also thrive
According to the 2023 WPS Index, the well-being of women is directly related to the prosperity of a country. Relationships between the 2023 WPS Index and other international indicators showed that countries with the highest level of women’s prosperity scored highest on measures of peace, democracy, and wealth. These measures are more staunchly linked with the level of prominence of women in society than they are with a country’s gross domestic product (GDP).
All the 20 countries ranked at the bottom of the 2023 WPS Index have gone through armed conflict in the last two years. In some of these countries – including South Sudan, Afghanistan, Yemen, and the Central African Republic – the majority of women population live close to areas of war.
Indexing women’s peace and security
According to Ortiz, there have been many incidences of political intolerance targeting women in recent years. Consequently, this year’s index introduces a new indicator for monitoring this phenomenon. The report calls it “a phenomenon that has been escalating in the past few years, and one that threatens to stall and even roll back progress.”
According to the report, women who participate in politics may be targeted using different forms of political intolerance such as physical and sexual assault, as well as online bullying. “New and emerging threats, such as the rapid proliferation of artificial intelligence, introduce unprecedented and often incalculable gendered impacts that multiply these risks,” the report noted. Data shows that the countries that recorded the highest number of political violence targeting women in 2022 were Mexico, Brazil, Nigeria, DRC, and Myanmar.
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