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Introducing the Global Gender and Environment Outlook

On 31 May, colleagues across Geneva gathered outside Maison de la Paix for a breakfast event presenting the first publication of its kind focusing on gender and environmental issues.

The event, held as part of World Environment Day celebrations, was an opportunity for individuals within the community to hear from and have a dynamic discussion with the lead author of the outlook Joni Seager, who is a feminist geographer and professor at Bentley University in Boston.  

Joni discussed the importance of gender mainstreaming within all environmental circles along with Elena Villalobos (World Health Organisation), Sarah Leugers (Gold Standard) and Seline Meijer (International Union for Conservation of Nature), other professionals dedicated to gender in the environment field.   

Joni encouraged colleagues to “look at what we don’t know” when studying gender and the environment.  She emphasized the importance of looking outside the norms and the obvious links when mainstreaming gender in environment related work.  

An example linking gender roles and chemicals was put forward with the sprayed application of pesticides in most regions of the world.  The spraying is almost always done by male workers, however their pesticide-drenched clothing is almost solely washed by women.  The latter’s exposure to the pesticides has not been researched and the risks are unknown, yet could reveal potentially crucial information on the damage it is having on women’s health.

The event, which was moderated by Caitlin Kraft-Buchman from Women@TheTable, sparked discussion on male involvement in the gender and environment discussion, and practical advice on how to influence other colleagues on the importance of gender mainstreaming in their environmental work.

Key findings from the outlook reveal the enormous lack of sex-disaggregated data in all areas of environmental research.  Researchers are encouraged to “lift the roof off of the household” to gather better data to fuel the environmental agenda.     

This event co-organised by Women@thetable, UN Environment and the Geneva Environment Network Secretariat.

The Global Gender and Environment Outlook can be downloaded at


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