CSW68: GRÓ GEST Side Event on Gender and Climate Action

15 March 2024
CSW68: GRÓ GEST Side Event on Gender and Climate Action

GRÓ GEST co-organised the Government of Iceland‘s side-event at CSW68 this year, titled Effective Climate Action: Community-Based Adaptation and Gender-Responsive Finance. This was the third time GEST has organised a side event at the CSW, first in 2015 and again in 2018.

This year, the event was in the spirit of the GEST programme, as it brought together both senior and junior experts, from academia, international organisations, and programme implementation. The experts included Dr. Bernadette P. Resurrección, Professor in Global Development Studies at Queen’s University in Canada; Stella Tereka, PhD Fellow Environment and Natural Resources at the University of Iceland and 2016 GEST alumna; Venge Nyirongo, Intergovernmental Specialist for the Rio Conventions and Sustainable Development at UN Women; and Wevyn Muganda, Deputy CEO at Asante Africa Foundation and 2023 GRÓ GEST alumna. The event was moderated by 2020 GRÓ GEST alumna Kinita Shenoy and the Director of GRÓ GEST, Dr. Irma Erlingsdóttir, delivered the opening address.

The side-event discussed and explored approaches to challenge structural gender inequality and injustice, in times of climate change. It also discussed effective responses to the climate crisis and highlighted how funding can be better channelled toward addressing the root causes of gender inequalities. The panellists approached the topic from diverse perspectives, emphasising that to create an inclusive and sustainable climate action, the leadership of women and girls needs to be recognised and integrated into decision making. They advocated for a holistic gender lens in decision-making processes, and the need for collaborative efforts to monitor and assess the impact of climate initiatives. Central to the discourse was the call for climate finance to be rooted in the leadership of local communities and feminists, recognizing their expertise and agency in shaping resilient, sustainable solutions.

Looking ahead, the imperative to advance gender-responsive climate action remains paramount. Climate change is not just an environmental challenge but a profound reckoning with social, economic, and gender disparities. It is urgent to foster a dialogue, sharing best practices, and catalysing transformative action at the intersection of gender equality and climate resilience. To achieve meaningful progress, concerted efforts are needed to integrate gender perspectives into climate finance mechanisms, amplify the leadership of women and girls, and mobilize resources to support grassroots initiatives. By harnessing collective expertise and advocating for inclusive policies, we can chart a course towards a more just, equitable, and sustainable future for all.

The event was very well attended and the GRÓ GEST team is very thankful to all of its panellists and the moderator for their participation in the event, and for the collaboration with the Icelandic Prime Minister‘s Office.

Dr. Bernadette P. Resurreccion started the roundtable discussion
Kinita Shenoy, 2020 alumna, moderated the panel discussion
Stella Tereka spoke about her research in Uganda
Venge Nyirongo shared his expertise on climate action
Wevyn Muganda shared her expertise from her work in Kenya
Priskila and Wevyn (2023 alumni), Kinita Shenoy (2020 alumna), Dr. Irma Erlingsdóttir (director of GRÓ GEST), Védís Ólafsdóttir (project manager at GRÓ GEST), and Stella Tereka (2016 alumna).
Dr. Irma Erlingsdóttir, Stella Tereka, Védís Ólafsdóttir and Kinita Shenoy in front of the UN Secretariet