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May 17, 2016

Gates Fund Commits $80 Million to Close Gender ‘Data Gap’

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation said Tuesday that it will spend $80 million over the next three years to accelerate social and economic progress for women and girls, in part through a concentrated effort to “close gender data gaps,” reports bdnews24.com, a Bangladeshi news website. Melinda Gates announced the pledge in a keynote speech at the Women Deliver conference in Copenhagen, the largest-ever global meeting focused on the health, rights, and well-being of girls and women. 

Ms. Gates aligned the funding commitment with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs, which include a target of achieving gender equality by 2030. “We can’t close the gender gap without closing the data gap," Ms. Gates told the Copenhagen conference, adding that there is currently “insufficient data” to assess progress toward meeting most SDG indicators.

The plan includes amassing data on how much time women and girls around the world spend on unpaid work and how that affects their educational and financial opportunities, according to a foundation statement. Ms. Gates has made the issue of unpaid work a centerpiece of her campaign for gender equity