Chinese Students Participated in Gender Equality Seminar

Students at the RWI supported Human Rights Master Programme at Peking University recently took part in a lecture held by Emma Melander Borg, head of Gender Equality at the Raoul Wallenberg Institute.

Under the headline “Gender Equality in Sweden,” Melander Borg spoke about Sweden’s feminist foreign policy and the quota system. The Institute took the opportunity to ask some of the attending students what their thoughts were on the lecture.

What were your impressions of the lecture? 

– Emma’s lecture was very impressive. It gave me a new perspective of gender equality and it was easy to understand with a stress-free environment and easy but accurate language, says Li Dongfang, Graduate school of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Law.

Was there anything in particular that you found interesting?

– I think the feminist movement and the achievement of that campaign in Sweden impressed me much. Gender factor must be taken into consideration in policy making, elections and official appointments…this creates a virtuous circle of society development. But there is still a long way to go in this field for many regions of China.

Jin Hua from Nankai University Institute of Economic and Social Development thought that there was similarities between the countries:

– There are similar circumstances on challenges prohibiting women from enjoying equal rights. In particular, in fields related to child rearing and career development, though Sweden does employ a sophisticated gender sensitive policy making approach, but in real life practical challenges are more or less the same.

Was there anything in particular that you found interesting?

– What I remembered most striking is that the political participation rate of women for Sweden reaches 44 percent. And that it is not the result of applying the gender quota system, but the result of demographic voting. But you know that in China although we adopted the quota system, the political participation rate of women is around 20 percent today, ad the higher the (political) level the less women are there. I noticed among the 204 members of newly elected 19th CPC Central Committee members, there are only 10 women.

About the Human Rights center at Peking University

Peking University Law School (PULS) is home to one of the first human rights centres in China, the Research Centre for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law (RCHR) established in 1997. RWI and PULS/RCHR have been cooperating in the field of human rights promotion and education since 1997 and in 2004 launched China’s first comprehensive human rights programme for master students (“Research Direction in Human Rights”) with support from RWI and Sida. By spring 2017, about 300 students had graduated from the Programme, and with another 43 students enrolled.

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