Equality Insights 2023 is written in big letters. The Equality Insights eye logo is in the centre.

Published 21 December 2023.

What a year 2023 has been for Equality Insights! From releasing Equality Insights Rapid Reports on multidimensional poverty in both Tonga & Solomon Islands to launching an interactive, inclusive gender data portal, it's been an amazing year.

As we begin to ease into our 'Rest as Resistance' period over the holiday break, we would like to take this opportunity to look back at the year and thank our incredible partners who have made this year so remarkably productive and influential in advancing the movement for inclusive data. Although there is still a considerable journey ahead, your support has played a crucial role in achieving substantial progress and fostering transformative changes within the realm of multidimensional poverty.

January: Gender Stats training in Tonga. Includes a black and white picture of the participants of the training

We were thrilled to start the year in Tonga for gender statistics training delivered alongside SPC (Pacific Community), the United Nations Statistical Institute for Asia and the Pacific (UN SIAP), and UN Women Asia and the Pacific.

The workshop was designed to strengthen the use of gender data and included representatives from the National Statistics Office, gender equality focal points in various government ministries, as well as women’s rights organisations and wider civil society.

February: Data Validation in Tonga. Features an image of Equality Insights staff with Principal Statistician Lupe Tupou.

In late February, members of the Equality Insights team were in Tonga to validate initial insights from the Equality Insights Rapid survey conducted by the Tonga Statistics Department (TSD) with the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Women’s Affairs and Gender Equality Division.

As Tonga was the first country in the world to implement this new phone-based variant of an existing survey, it was particularly important to collaboratively check and interpret preliminary findings. The 99% participation rate achieved by TSD was an extraordinary achievement and a testament to the leadership of powerhouse Principal Statistician Lupe Tupou. Read more about the methodology used in the Tool Development Report here.

March: Blog - Gender Equality in Numbers. Features image of 'International Women's Day' Banner

For International Women’s Day, we dove deep into the numbers on gender equality in a scroll story. Despite significant gender data gaps, the available data show that progress is being made - it’s just happening far too slowly and unequally. Guided by inclusive and intersectional data, we can make real progress towards gender equality. Read the article here.

Must Reads

March: Blog, Gender Data & Feminist Foreign Policy

Read it here.

Gender data and feminist foreign policy hold immense potential to realise transformative change, especially when combined. Our Director, Joanna Pradela, explains why countries with feminist foreign policies should enable the collection and use of gender data to deliver greater equality outcomes.

March: Australian Feminist Foreign Policy Coalition Issue Paper

Read it here.

Our Strategic Advisor Jo Crawford explains how a lack of gender-sensitive data contributes to the significant and persistent gap between commitment and action on gender equality. She outlines why action to support gender-sensitive poverty measurement, and in turn improve our understanding of linkages between gender and poverty, should be a feminist foreign policy priority.

May: Blog: What Partnership Made Possible in Tonga. Collecting Inclusive Poverty Data

Read it here.

In this blog for the UN Data Forum, Equality Insights' Jo Crawford and Dr Gayatri Ramnath and Tonga Statistics Department's Lupe Tupou explore the transformative potential of partnerships – especially when built upon a foundation of collaboration, commitment and trust – and how this can lead to better and more inclusive data.

June: Equality Insights Rapid Tonga Launch
Item 1 of 3
A group photo of the Equality Insights team meeting with women leaders in the Tonga community.

Meeting with women leaders from government, the judiciary, parliament, civil society and business to discuss findings from the Equality Insights' Tonga study and explore opportunities to use gender data to advance gender equality.

Meeting with women leaders from government, the judiciary, parliament, civil society and business to discuss findings from the Equality Insights' Tonga study and explore opportunities to use gender data to advance gender equality.

Members of the Equality Insights team with Lupe Tupou, Tonga Statistics Department, and Jitika Prasad, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, at the launch of Equality Insights Rapid Tonga.

Members of the Equality Insights team with Lupe Tupou, Tonga Statistics Department, and Jitika Prasad, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, at the launch of Equality Insights Rapid Tonga.

Members of the Equality Insights team with Lupe Tupou, Tonga Statistics Department, and Jitika Prasad, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, at the launch of Equality Insights Rapid Tonga.

Meeting with Rhema Misa, President of Lavame'a Ta'e'iloa Disabled People Association, to discuss findings from the Equality Insights Tonga study.

Meeting with Rhema Misa, President of Lavame'a Ta'e'iloa Disabled People Association, to discuss findings from the Equality Insights Tonga study.

Meeting with Rhema Misa, President of Lavame'a Ta'e'iloa Disabled People Association, to discuss findings from the Equality Insights Tonga study.

In June, we were thrilled to launch Equality Insights Rapid Tonga! These findings came from the Equality Insights Rapid survey conducted in 2022 by the Tonga Statistics Department with support from the International Women's Development Agency (IWDA).

This report presents findings at the dimension level and provides new information about the situation of particular groups in relation to 15 key dimensions of life, in the context of disruptions linked to COVID-19 and the events surrounding the January 2022 volcanic eruption. As Equality Insights Rapid collects data predominantly at the individual-level, it is possible to see similarities and differences associated with factors such as gender, age, location and disability, as presented in this report, and this data can be used to inform policy and programmatic priorities.

This infographic presents key findings from the 2022 Equality Insights Rapid Tonga study. Findings are presented at a dimensional level across the 15 key areas that Equality Insights Rapid measures including clothing, education, energy, family planning, food, health, relationships, safety, sanitation, shelter, time use, voice, water, and work.

The Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcano eruption in January 2022 caused immediate and lasting impacts across Tonga. In the context of this significant event, the focus of this research brief examines the Water, Shelter and Environment dimensions of the Equality Insights survey implemented in Tonga between May-June 2022. Results pointed to significant levels of air and water pollution as well as water insecurity.

Women Deliver Oceanic Pacific Convening Conference - June

In June, hundreds of women, including the Equality Insights team, gathered across two powerful convenings in the Oceanic Pacific region. Representing the voices of women, girls, and gender non-binary people, they collaboratively determined 'Gender Data and Evidence' as one of the twelve regional priorities to take to the global stage at the Women Deliver 2023 conference taking place in Kigali the following month.

July: Women Deliver Conference Kilgali

Equality Insights staff joined over 6000 feminists in Kigali, Rwanda, for the 2023 Women Deliver Conference – one of the largest global gatherings on gender equality – where we continued to make the case for more and better gender data.

To launch Women Deliver, together with IWDA, Equality Insights co-hosted a drinks reception to launch our 'Data for Gender Equality' Zine'.

The session focused on the need for gender data to evolve feminist philanthropy and was co-hosted with Global Fund for Women, in collaboration with Diverse Voices and Action for Equality, Data2X, United Nations Foundation, Equal Measures 2030, Women's Environment & Development Organization, Fiji Women's Rights Movement, PARIS21, and the Gender and Environment Data Alliance (GEDA).

For almost 100 years, zines as we know them today have been self-published as a way to share perspectives, ideas and interests that aren’t often featured in mainstream spaces.

We’re proud to add to the catalogue of vibrant feminist zines and share the Data for Gender Equality zine, which showcases organisations at the forefront of a gender data revolution. It is a compilation of writing and artwork exploring all things data, feminism, and gender equality.

The zine explores themes such as gender climate justice, inclusive poverty measurement, data cooperatives, LGBTIQA+ rights, experiences of sexual harassment, and global progress on gender equality.

July: Data validation Solomon Islands. Features an image of the participants engaging in the process.

In July, we were excited to visit Solomon Islands to validate the data for Equality Insights Rapid Solomon Islands, taken in 2022. In the room were representatives from government ministries working in research, policy and gender. There was lots of discussion about the importance of disaggregated data, the value of data that reflects lived experience, and its meaning within the Solomon Islands context.


August: Conference - the Global Forum on Gender Statistics. Features an image of Dr Gayatri Ramnath speaking.

Our Data Use and Engagement Manager, Dr Gayatri Ramnath, travelled to Johannesburg, South Africa, in August to present at the 9th UN Global Forum on Gender Statistics, presenting at the session 'Gender Mainstreaming in Official Statistics: Going Beyond Traditional Areas' in relation to gender, environment and the findings from the recent Equality Insights Rapid Tonga Report

The session yielded several crucial insights, including that the research conducted in Tonga has revealed that deprivation and poverty affect men and women differently, underscoring the necessity of mainstreaming gender into poverty statistics. The data also highlights that gender plays a significant role in influencing outcomes in 7 out of the 15 dimensions.

September: Conference - Feminist Funded Rising! Features an image of participants, including Director Joanna Pradela.

Our Director Joanna Pradela presented recently at Feminist Funded, joining gender equality advocates from around the world to connect, collaborate, and co-create a gender-just future. Equality Insights was showcased twice in the Conference.

The first was through a session focused on 'Building accountability for gender data through feminist foreign policies'. This session built from the Issues Paper authored by Equality Insights’ Strategic Advisor, Joanne Crawford, on Gender and Poverty as a Feminist Foreign Policy Priority. Equality Insights also featured in a second panel designed to unpack the role of evidence-informed, feminist policy-making. Using a data-driven example from the results of the Solomon Islands survey, we demonstrated how individual-level, gender-sensitive and intersectional data shows how different people experience certain issues.

November: UNECE Group of Experts on Measuring Poverty & Inequality

In late November, our Strategic Advisor Joanne Crawford participated in two workshops organised by the UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE). The Workshop on Harmonisation of Poverty Statistics to measure SDG 1 and SDG 10 reviewed the availability of data on poverty and the landscape of approaches in use to measure multidimensional poverty. Significant gaps in poverty data were noted, particularly in low-income countries, and differences in the availability of indicators nationally and on global databases. 

At the The Group of Experts on Measuring Poverty and Inequality, the Equality Insights team underlined the importance of measuring poverty and inequality in a way that enables intersectional and multidimensional analysis, in order to understand the challenges faced by specific groups and the factors shaping their situation.

December: Australasian Aid Conference. Features an image of Joanne Crawford speaking at the conference

At the Australasian Aid Conference, Joanne Crawford, our Strategic Advisor, spoke about her Issues Paper on gender and poverty for the Australian Feminist Foreign Policy Coalition, as part of a panel on Feminist foreign policy and practical strategies for transforming systems of power. She underlined the foundational role of household-level poverty measurement in constraining the evidence available to policymakers, by systematically masking the relationship between gender and poverty. Jo argued that gender-insensitive measurement is part of the deep structures that perpetuate gender inequality and poverty.

This key annual conference brings together researchers from Australia, the Pacific, Asia and beyond working on aid and international development policy, to share insights, and promote collaboration and community.

Equality Insights Rapid

Solomon Islands

A photo from the Equality Insights Rapid Solomon Islands launch

In October, we were excited to launch the findings from Equality Insights Rapid Solomon Islands.
In 2022, we partnered with The Solomon Islands Ministry of Women, Youth, Children and Family Affairs and The Solomon Islands National Statistics Office to undertake Equality Insights Rapid Surveys in every province in Solomon Islands. Data was collected by Honiara-based research organisation Dignity Pasifik.

The resulting insights provide a clearer picture of the circumstances of individuals and groups, and how these vary, to inform targeted, responsive, evidence-based and data-driven solutions that tackle poverty and reduce inequalities that can inform priorities and programs for decision-makers across Solomon Islands.

The team were in Honiara at the beginning of October to launch the report, alongside representatives from civil society, government ministries and other distinguished guests. The launch involved a presentation of the report, followed by a data deep dive of the survey, which was very well received by all participants. You can watch the recording of the launch here.

Equality Insights Rapid Solomon Islands

The findings in this report present a high-level analysis of multidimensional poverty at the household and individual level. The survey captures information on 15 dimensions of poverty and inequality, as well as an assets module to assess financial circumstances. The findings present a multidimensional analysis of poverty in the context of disruptions linked to COVID-19 and the susceptibility to natural disasters.

October: Data Portal launch. Features a cartoon image of the data portal at the bottom

In October, Equality Insights launched the beta version of our brand-new, gender-sensitive Data Portal!

The Equality Insights Data Portal is a newly developed platform that houses gender-sensitive data on multidimensional poverty and inequality collected in Equality Insights’ Surveys in Tonga and Solomon Islands. It is designed to be accessible, available to all and harnessed for collective impact.

This means that the data in the portal is at your fingertips, empowering grassroots organisations, policymakers, change-agents, leaders, feminists, data analysts and beyond to utilise this invaluable resource to improve the lives of those affected by poverty and inequality.

The data, collected in 2022 in Equality Insights Rapid Surveys in Tonga and Solomon Islands, is able to be explored by dimension; such as Clothing, Food, or Safety; by level of deprivation; or by societal group, such as age, disability, gender or location. Within the portal, you can learn more about the levels of deprivation in all 15 dimensions and explore how they differ for each category; how the levels of deprivation per dimension compare across groups; how the dimensions are measured; and how the data was collected.

November: Plan Your Power Tonga

Equality Insights was excited to visit Tonga in November with IWDA's Intersectional Feminist Workshops team for a Plan Your Power workshop focused on disability advocacy. The workshop was created for the Lavame’a Ta’e’iloa Disabled People Association (LATA) using Equality Insights data to ground advocacy in evidence and was designed to support LATA in developing an advocacy strategy embedded in women's and disability rights principles. The participants progressed through every stage of the advocacy planning process, culminating in a comprehensive advocacy strategy that was ready to implement at the completion of the week. 

IWDA’s Plan Your Power is also available as a toolkit, free for download! Anyone can use this toolkit to progress the most important advances in women’s rights and ensure they are not scaled back or eliminated altogether. Access the toolkit here.

We are so excited for what 2024 may hold as we continue to progress work on multidimensional poverty.

Equality Insights is a gender data program delivered by the International Women’s Development Agency (IWDA). We collect and use inclusive data to drive progress on gender equality and inspire social change.

Stay up-to-date with our work by following us on Twitter, LinkedIn, or subscribing to the newsletter.