The Social Institutions and Gender Index (SIGI) Regional Report for Europe and Central Asia offers an in-depth analysis of the region’s progress towards gender equality. As one of the strongest regional performers in the 2014 edition of the SIGI, the Report highlights the region’s commitment to empowering women and eliminating gender inequality. Comprehensive legislative frameworks protecting women’s and men’s rights and targeted policy measures have removed barriers to women’s participation in the work force and targeted gender gaps in other areas of public life. However, as the report shows, gender gaps remain in all aspects of social, political and economic life negatively affecting women’s and girl’s development outcomes and representing an economic cost for the region.
The Europe and Central Asia Regional Report draws from SIGI’s 14 variables that measure gender-based discrimination in social norms, practices and laws. The Regional Report reveals both the heterogeneity between countries and issues that affect women across the region such as violence against women. The report is divided into three sections: a regional overview of progress and remaining challenges to achieving gender equality; an economic analysis of the development cost of discriminatory social institutions for the region; and an in-depth analysis of the region’s performance in the five SIGI sub-indices: discriminatory family code, restricted physical integrity, son bias, restricted resources and assets and restricted civil liberties. By using a social norms lens to analyse the situation of women and girls in the region, the Report provides a deeper understanding of the root causes of gender-based discrimination in Europe and Central Asia and suggests new approaches to achieving gender equality.