The co-operation of the Nordic governments within the field of gender equality and LGBTI is led by the Nordic ministers for gender equality, which together comprise Nordic Council of Ministers for Gender Equality and LGBTI.
Between ministerial meetings, a committee of senior officials (EK-JÄM) ensures that matters are followed up or prepared within a number of prioritised policy areas.
The Nordic countries’ joint cultural, historical, and democratic traditions have made it possible to develop close and constructive co-operation within the field of gender equality and LGBTI.
In 1974, the Nordic Council of Ministers decided that all Nordic governments would appoint someone to maintain contact with the other Nordic governments on gender equality issues. A few years later, an action programme was in place for Nordic co-operation on gender equality issues and a committee of senior officials was established. In 2020, this co-operation was extended to include the rights of LGBTI people. LGBTI is an acronym of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex. Although the abbreviations may vary in the Nordic countries, LGBTI is used throughout official Nordic co-operation, just as it is done in other international organisations.
With the area of LGBTI rights anchored in the Nordic Council of Ministers, it will be easier to learn from each other, develop initiatives that will have an impact, and have a strong joint voice internationally. Through a joint initiative, the Nordic countries can become world leaders when it comes to protecting and promoting the rights of LGBTI people. The first step after the ministers’ decision on their new co-operation was to map and analyse the area of LGBTI rights in the Nordic Region. In the future, work within the area of LGBTI rights will be governed by strategic priorities developed in the co-operation programme.
None of the Nordic countries have achieved gender equality, and there’s always something that the other countries can be inspired by. If we look at the progress in the Nordic countries, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland as a group, it’s easier to see that development towards a more gender equal society has been ongoing since the 1970s.
International studies regularly rank the Nordic countries as the most gender-equal in the world. Similar trends exist in the area of LGBTI rights. Yet studies of the distribution of power and statistics show that we’re nowhere near finished.
This page contains current political programmes for Nordic co-operation on gender equality, as well as a wealth of material on the current state of gender equality and LGBTI rights in the Nordic Region and on how they’re being developed.
Nordic Council of Ministers’ action plan for Vision 2030
The action plan describes how the Nordic Council of Ministers will work to achieve the objectives of this vision through a series of initiatives linked to the vision’s three strategic priorities: a green Nordic Region, a competitive Nordic Region and a socially sustainable Nordic Region. There are 12 objectives linked to the strategic priorities. The strategic priorities and objectives govern all the activities of the Nordic Council of Ministers over the next four years. The action plan is divided into 12 sections, with each one linked to one of the 12 objectives.
A tool in the action plan: Read the Nordic Council of Ministers’ policy for mainstreaming sustainable development, gender equality, and a children’s rights and youth perspective
Sustainable development, gender equality, and a children’s rights and youth perspective must permeate the Nordic Council of Ministers’ work as a whole. The integration of this perspective (or “mainstreaming” as it is also called) is a prerequisite for bringing to fruition the Nordic Council of Ministers’ vision of the Nordic Region as the world’s most sustainable and integrated region by 2030.
In practice, this means that sustainable development, gender equality, and a children’s rights and youth perspective must systematically influence all activities in the Nordic Council of Ministers. The perspective must be present in all stages of planning, decision-making, implementation and evaluation. Responsibility lies with the employees and stakeholders who normally participate in the work.
The Nordic Council of Ministers’ policy for integration clarifies the conditions required for the Nordic Council of Ministers’ Vision 2030 of a more green, competitive and socially sustainable Nordic Region to become a reality. These conditions are about making sure that the work of the Nordic Council of Ministers is sustainable, equal, inclusive, representative and accessible. The focus of the policy is also on an approach which is in line with the international commitments such as the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), CEDAW and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child – an approach that is a condition for a Nordic sustainability agenda that excludes no one.
Gender Equality in Figures 2021
In “Gender Equality in Figures” you will find the latest statistics on gender equality in the Nordic Region. There are 33 indicators showing how far the region has come and what challenges remain in terms of demographics, family and social care, health, education, the labour market and income, as well as power and influence. The publication will hopefully be useful for those looking for reliable and comparative data on gender equality in the Nordic Region.
Nordic Information on Gender (NIKK)
Nordic Information on Gender, NIKK, is a collaborative body under the Nordic Council of Ministers.
NIKK shall contribute to achieving the goals of the Nordic co-operation programme for gender equality and the extension to the area of LGBTI rights. This is mainly done through the collection and strategic dissemination of research, policy, knowledge and best practice from a Nordic and cross-sectoral perspective.
NIKK also administers the Nordic Gender Equality Fund and the Nordic LGBTI Fund on behalf of the Nordic Council of Ministers.