Background

During 2012 entities will be expected to prepare, with the support of UN Women, for first reporting in 2013, which will set a baseline for the UN system. Entities will be expected to meet all requirements in the SWAP between 2017 and 2019. Reporting by entities (to UN Women) on the SWAP will be expected. UN Women will consolidate individual entity reporting, to feed into the Report of the Secretary-General to ECOSOC on “Mainstreaming a gender perspective into all policies and programmes in the UN system”. It would thus facilitate and substantiate accountability to Member States for the work of the UN system on GEEW. The SWAP also includes a roll-out strategy to ensure both continued engagement of all UN system entities backstopped by UN Women, as appropriate and feasible, and adequate capacity across the UN system for implementation of the SWAP. The centrality of the roll-out phase for the sustainability and success of the SWAP cannot be overly emphasized.

Discussion

During the discussions, organizations congratulated UN Women on its organizational capabilities, the extensive and participatory consultative process, and the high quality of the final product. Organizations that participated as pilots reported that the exercise was feasible and very positive and rewarding. Some also reported that it had significantly enhanced their own internal capacity to promote gender equality and the empowerment of women. Over all, the SWAP, as an instrument and process, was considered excellent and the action plan was strongly supported. While one member raised concerns about the costs of reporting and collecting data, others offered their partnership to entities of the UN system in the context of implementing the SWAP. Still others noted that the system is already beginning alignment with the SWAP as a result of the SWAP development process.

Action

The Committee took note of the progress achieved in the development of the system-wide action plan for implementation of the "United Nations system-wide policy on gender equality and the empowerment of women", and encouraged organizations to continue their collaborative approach to accelerate gender mainstreaming across policies and programmes, and gender equality in the UN system.