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On 11 October 2017, the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) releases its 3rd edition of the Gender Equality Index.

The Gender Equality Index is a composite indicator that measures the complex concept of gender equality and, based on the EU policy framework, assists in monitoring progress of gender equality across the EU over time.

The six core domains (work, money, knowledge, time, power and health) of the Gender Equality Index, assign scores for Member States between 1 for total inequality and 100 for full equality.

The six core domains are combined into a core Index that is complemented by two additional, equally important, satellite domains of violence and intersecting inequalities. They belong to the framework of the Gender Equality Index in all respects, but do not impact the overall score. Each domain is further divided into sub-domains which cover the key issues within the respective thematic areas. 

Overall, gender equality is progressing at a snail’s pace. In particular, the domain of time is the only negative domain in the Gender Equality Index, showing the negative trend of change since 2005. 

The domain of time is particularly relevant for us. It measures gender inequalities in allocation of time spent doing care and domestic work and social activities. It is broken down in two subdomain: care activities and social activities.

A new very relevant feature has been added in the recent Index: in previous version of the Gender Equality Index care activities included just childcare and household activities. The current index includes also “care for elderly or people with disabilities”. Moreover, the data used to monitor the gender gap in the time domain will no longer refer just to the working population, rather to the whole population of working age.

EIGE’s Gender Equality Index shows that the unequal distribution of care and domestic responsibilities between women and men remains the most problematic area in the EU in terms of gender equality.

In the EU, in 2015, the scores in the domain of time reveal persistent and growing gender inequalities in women’s and men’s time use in Europe. With a score of 65.7, the domain of time has the third lowest score in the Gender Equality Index.

The score in 2015 was 1 point lower than in 2005 and a further 3.2 points lower than the score of 2012. This shows that overall in the EU-28, changes in the organisation of time between women and men are not linear and that in 2015 the situation has become more unequal than it was ten years ago.

Eurocarers will release a fiche on the topic of gender dimension of informal care, where we will investigate the causes, the consequences and the possible solution of a gendered dimension of care.  Eurocarers believes that care has to be considered a central activity for the well-being of our societies and it should be redistributed between men and women, as well as between the family and the State.

Further information:

Access EIGE's Gender Equality Index 2017 here.

Find Gender Equality Index 2017 indicators & data under EIGE's Gender Statistics Database here.

Here you can select the country you are interested in and the domain and check the score for each or a specific domain.

Watch a video synthetizing the main findings here