IMPOWR's Research Topics

The content of the IMPOWR database is organized primarily by country under the following seven topic headings and further subdivided into several subtopics (subtopic schematic and additional explanation available for download):

CEDAW Status Activities of the State: CEDAW Status (CEDAW Articles 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 14)

  • Signatory or ratified
  • Temporary special measures
  • Cultural patterns of conduct
  • Rural areas

Civic Life Civic Life (CEDAW Articles 7, 8 and 9)

  • Rights to vote
  • Eligibility in policy formation and implementation
  • Participation in association and NGOs
  • Represent government internationally
  • Acquire, change, retain nationality

Healtcare Healthcare (CEDAW Article 12)

  • Access to healthcare
  • Family planning, reproductive and maternal health
  • Transgender issues

Marriage Marriage and Family Relations (CEDAW Article 16)

  • Marriage or child marriage
  • Divorce
  • Custody and adoption
  • Adultery
  • Inheritance
  • Marital assets and property

Economics Economic and Social Life (CEDAW Articles 10, 11, 13 and 15)

  • Access to education and equal curriculum
  • Male or female stereotypes in education
  • Employment opportunities, right to work, remuneration, benefits
  • Mortgages, loans
  • Privacy
  • Dress
  • Mobility, choice of residence (CEDAW Article 15)
  • Rights to make contracts (CEDAW Article 15)
  • Ownership and administration of property (CEDAW Article 15)
  • Recreation and sports

Crime Crimes and Violence (CEDAW Article 6)

  • Trafficking
  • Prostitution
  • Rape and sexual assault
  • Domestic violence (CEDAW Article 12)
  • War crimes
  • Correctional facilities
  • Right to trial
  • Punishment
  • Attacks against women and girls

Justice Access to Justice (CEDAW Article 15)

  • Legal literacy
  • Equal access to courts


The content provided under each subtopic includes free text contributions, as well as links to other sites and resources, and are analyzed on how they relate to four law reform variables, as well as a summary overview.

 1.  Subtopic Summary Information:

  • The summary is an overview of the status or progress of the topic/subtopic in the country.

 2.  Current state of the law:

  • Are the rights addressed by the subtopic guaranteed in the Constitution? If so, please cite the provision and language.
  • Are the rights addressed by the subtopic established in law, executive order or regulations? If so, please cite the law, statute, code, order or regulation. 
  • Does the law prohibit discrimination against women in matters covered by this subtopic? If so, please cite a specific law.
  • Does the law prohibit discrimination by government authorities as well as private individuals and entities in matters covered by this subtopic?
  • What penalties may be imposed for discrimination in  violation of the law in matters covered by this subtopic?

 3.  Law reform efforts and projects:

  • What law reform projects on this subtopic have been undertaken or completed?  Please provide a general description and/or link to project details or report, if possible.
  • What were the results of each project; was it successful?  If so, why?  If not, why?
  • Are the results sustainable over time?  If so, why?  If not, why?
  • What additional law reform projects should be undertaken to guarantee the rights pertaining to this subtopic?

 4.  The role of local NGOs in obtaining and implementing law reforms:

  • Are civil society institutions engaged in the establishment and protection of rights relevant to this subtopic?  If so, which ones (e.g., NGOs, academic institutions, professional societies and organizations, women’s rights groups, etc.)?
  • Has the involvement of civil society institutions had a positive effect?
  • Can or should civil society institutions be more involved?

 5.  Effect of local customs and traditions on implementation and enforcement of law reforms:

  • How do religious, community and/or traditional practices affect the rights pertaining to this subtopic?
  • If these practices have a negative impact on the rights pertaining to this subtopic, how can such practices best be addressed?