Over three quarters of respondents said that getting more women into leading roles in developing countries would improve respect for human rights, with 72% saying it would also improve living conditions and 65% believing it would prevent conflict and war.
Over nine in 10 Europeans thought that gender equality improves the way societies in general function and that all aid programmes should take specific account of women’s rights.
In terms of how problems in developing countries affect men and women; most respondents thought that women were affected more than men by physical violence (83%), as well as problems in accessing education (63%), basic human rights not being respected and lack of an income/job (both 61%).
Women continue to suffer severely from discrimination in developing countries; and confront serious health risks, particularly related to maternal health. Violence affects one third of all women in their lifetime. As the world’s second largest donor, the EU has a crucial role to play in helping the development of women and girls.
Over nine in 10 EU respondents thought that gender equality improves the way societies function and that all aid programmes should take specific account of women’s rights. The range of the results in the EU regarding the opinion of gender equality was notably small, with the highest results being observed in Sweden, the Netherlands and Romania (all 96%) and the lowest results in Latvia, Slovenia (both 87%) and Estonia (86%).
Overall, EU respondents think the issues that affect women more than men are physical violence(83%), problems in accessing education (63%), non-respect of basic human rights and the lack of an income/job (both 61%).
Europeans think that having more women in positions of political power and influence would have a positive impact on developing countries. Respect for human rights was the item which attracted the most positive answers in the EU, where over three-quarters of respondents said that having more women would ‘make things better’ (78%). The living conditions of people and preventing conflict and war closely followed, with 72% and 65% of respondents (respectively) also taking this viewpoint. Swedish, Finnish and Irish respondents were the most likely to say that having women in these positions ‘makes things better’.
Source: European Commission.