For the past decade, the OECD Development Centre’s Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) has been measuring and addressing gender-based discrimination by looking at the invisible part of the iceberg and providing a clearer vision of how social institutions shape women’s lives. The SIGI looks at the gaps that legislation, social norms and practices create between women and men in terms of rights and opportunities. This innovative tool enables policy makers and development practitioners to understand the barriers to gender equality better and to identify the drivers behind persistent forms of discrimination. First launched in 2009, and subsequently in 2012, 2014 and 2019, the SIGI has served as the basis for a series of reports analysing the level of discrimination in social institutions and the progress on gender equality. SIGI publications have included global reports, regional reports and country studies.

The SIGI 2019 Global Report assesses social institutions holistically by looking at the de jure and the de facto situations, often placing their effects in opposition to each other to show that, despite impressive advances towards gender equality since the last SIGI report in 2014, the statutory legal system can be thwarted by parallel structures embedded in society. The SIGI 2019 has also been adapted to meet the needs of the development community as it works towards Agenda 2030. The SIGI is an official data source for SDG Indicator 5.1.1. on legal frameworks, but also provides data for almost all targets included in SDG 5, providing a comprehensive vision of national progress on gender equality.

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