The European Council has declared its unanimous support for the creation of a European Gender Institute.
The decision made on 1 June was based on a feasibility study, presented in January 2002, which reviewed needs and modalities for creating the institute and established some of the tasks the future institute could be in charge of:
- Coordinating the different actions at EU level promoting equality between genders;
- Collecting and diffusing information about gender;
- Raising gender visibility;
- Providing tools for gender mainstreaming.
The idea of creating a European centre for gender studies is not new. It was first introduced in 1995 and relayed by the Swedish presidency in 1999. But it is only in December 2000 during the European Council of Nice that the establishment of the institute was included in the EU Social Agenda.
Although the support expressed by the Council does not have an immediate impact, it demonstrates the will of Member states to see gender inequalities addressed at EU level.
Click here to download the feasibility study. It was conducted by the Commission under the Community Framework Strategy on Gender Equality (2001-2005).