A woman holds a cloth with text that reads in Spanish ‘All violence’ during a march called by feminist activists, Santiago, Chile, May 11, 2018 (AP photo by Esteban Felix).

While women’s rights have become a mainstream issue, societal change when it comes to gender equality has lagged. And in many countries where legal protections of women have made gains, they have faced a backlash. Meanwhile, gender-based violence remains a scourge, despite the emergence of the #MeToo movement.

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Globally, human rights remain under assault, whether by populist movements desperate to gain power or authoritarian governments eager to maintain it. At the same time, the populist rise has invigorated civil society efforts to protect historically marginalized communities.

Competition over maritime resources and territorial disputes over maritime borders highlight the tensions between national sovereignty and transnational challenges in the maritime domain. While often ignored in coverage of international affairs, it features prominently in bilateral, regional and multilateral diplomacy.

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With U.S. President Joe Biden’s latest escalation of the U.S.-China trade war, it’s clear the world is a far cry from the “Golden Age” of economic globalization that marked the 1990s and early 2000s. So how did globalization’s “golden age” come to a halt? Three major factors contributed to the global economy’s fragility.

a protestor in egypt ahead of cop27

With the United Nations COP 27 Climate Change Conference set to take place in the Egyptian city of Sharm El-Sheikh beginning on Nov. 6, many observers have raised concerns about the country’s human rights and environmental records and what this will mean for the conference as well as climate justice more broadly.

Workers protest in support of striking teachers, outside the National Assembly in Panama City, Panama.

Across the world, there have been more than 8,200 protests and riots in response to the rising cost of living in the first seven months of this year alone. Although the actors involved represent broad, heterogeneous demographics, there are some clear patterns and takeaways that have already emerged.

African Union Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat meets with United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at UN headquarters

Two gatherings of international institutions this week—the IMF and World Bank’s annual meeting and a U.N. dialogue with the African Union—have been dominated by the global economic crisis. But many African governments and citizens regard multilateral organizations like these as missing in action regarding their major challenges.

nobel peace prize sign

The Nobel Peace Prize committee’s flawed decisions over the years have contributed to list after list of “the worst Nobel laureates,” a phenomenon that even the prize committee itself has acknowledged. Despite all these unforced errors and shortcomings, however, the Nobel Peace Prize matters and should still be given.

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The international order is fraying, generating uncertainty about who will intervene to resolve persistent conflicts, and who will fund humanitarian responses to human-made and natural disasters. Meanwhile, emerging crises, proxy wars and multiple hot spots pose new risks, even as the nature of transnational terrorism is evolving.

the un amid the russia-ukraine war

Russia’s annexation of four partially occupied areas in Ukraine would appear to turn the U.N. Charter on its head, prompting some observers to wonder whether it has outlived its usefulness. In fact, however, the charter is working exactly as was envisioned, and perhaps even better than its framers hoped, for three reasons.

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The novel coronavirus caught many world leaders unprepared, despite consistent warnings that a global pandemic was inevitable. And it has revealed the flaws in a global health architecture headed by the World Health Organization, which had already been faulted for its response to the 2014 Ebola pandemic in West Africa. Will there be an overhaul of the WHO when the pandemic is over?

celebrity activist kim kardashian

Some observers have suggested that celebrities using their status to catalyze political involvement by their fans represents a new kind of celebrity activism, with more of an emphasis on inspiring action than taking action. But is that the case? And can celebrity activists, in inspiring such action, actually make a difference?

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Russia unleashing the destructive power of a nuclear weapon in Ukraine would be catastrophic, but not solely because of the physical damage the weapon would cause. Instead, Russia’s use of a nuclear weapon would be catastrophic because it would cause us to enter a new world, one transformed in three permanent ways.

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The need for peacebuilding in post-conflict societies grew out of the realization that signing agreements to bring fighting to an end is a necessary but insufficient step toward true and enduring peace. But while many of peacebuilding’s objectives seem self-evident, it is often laborious and expensive—and easily undone.

Biden speaking about UNSC reform

During his speech to the U.N. General Assembly, President Joe Biden declared that the U.S. is open to U.N. Security Council reform. Though major reforms are unlikely, Washington still needs to demonstrate that it is at least serious about the effort. That could mean looking for fairly quick wins to show it means business.

President Jokowi of Indonesia with President Putin of Russia

Last month, Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo noted that the country’s first-ever presidency of the G-20 in 2022 was a sign of its growing global stature. The remarks spoke to how Jokowi is walking a fine line between selectively engaging abroad, while also seeking to advance his immediate policy priorities at home.