2023 Summer/Winter School – Gender-transformative approaches to environmental protection: Women, Girls & the Ocean 

Date and Time: THURSDAY 14 September 2023, 4pm-5.30pm CEST



The entanglement of gender and climate issues has been flagged up as one of the greatest global challenges of today. To echo the UN Women’s warning, the coupling of gender inequality and climate crisis jeopardises livelihoods, health, safety and security for women and girls around the world. The challenge has, too, been making crucial links between, between gender, social equity, and climate change among climate change scientists, researchers, and policymakers. 

Girls and women are disproportionately affected by environmental degradation, but they are powerful environment and ocean stewards. However, their agency and distinctive knowledge are often overlooked, their capacities unleveraged, while gender-based constraints exacerbate their vulnerability. 

This panel aims to discuss the protection of the human rights of women and girls at the climate-ocean nexus, exploring empowerment of girls and women in the law of the sea, marine sciences, and ocean management, including in the specific context of small-scale fisheries. The panel will also reflect on the specific role of girls and women as environmental and ocean human rights defenders and their transformative potential for more sustainable ocean governance. 


Ms Valentina Germani, UN Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea (chair). (TBC)

Dr Georgina Yaa Oduro, One Ocean Hub and University of Cape Coast, Ghana.

Dr Philile Mbatha, One Ocean Hub and University of Cape Town, South Africa.

Dr Buhle Francis, One Ocean Hub and Rhodes University, South Africa.

Ms Martha Jonas, One Ocean Hub and University of Namibia.

Prof Elisa Morgera, One Ocean Hub and University of Strathclyde, UK (discussant).


Journal articles

Golo HK and Erinosho B. (2022). Tackling the challenges confronting women in the Elmina fishing community of Ghana: A human rights framework. Marine Policy Vol. 147, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpol.2022.105349

Shellock R, Cvitanovic C, Mackay M, McKinnon MC, Blythe J, Kelly R, van Putten IE, Tuohy P, Bailey M, Begossi A, Crona B, Fakoya KA, Ferreira BP, Ferrer AJG, Frangoudes K, Gobin J, Goh HC, Haapasaari P, Hardesty BD, Häussermann V, Hoareau K, Hornidge AK, Isaacs M, Kraan M, Li Y, Liu M, Lopes PFM, Mlakar M, Morrison TH, Oxenford HA, Pecl GT, Penca J, Robinson C, Selim S, Skern-Mauritzen M, Soejima K, Soto D, Spalding AK, Vadrot A, Vaidianu N, Webber M, Wisz MS, (2022). Breaking down barriers: The identification of actions to promote gender equality in interdisciplinary marine research institutions, One Earth. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.oneear.2022.05.006


Febrica S, Small-Scale Fisheries and Blue Justice: Procedural and Substantive Rights of Fisherfolks, https://oneoceanhub.org/small-scale-fisheries-and-blue-justice/

Francis B, Supporting small-scale fisher women’s livelihoods in Eastern Cape, South Africa, https://oneoceanhub.org/supporting-small-scale-fisher-womens-livelihoods-in-the-eastern-cape-of-south-africa/

Francis B, Oduro GY, Boateng KA, Morgera E and Febrica S, Protecting women’s and girl’s rights to a healthy environment, https://oneoceanhub.org/protecting-womens-and-girls-rights-to-a-healthy-environment/

Maude C, Unveiling hidden contributors: women within small-scale fisheries and greater equity in ocean governance, https://oneoceanhub.org/unveiling-the-hidden-contributors-towards-researching-on-women-within-small-scale-fisheries-to-reach-greater-equity-in-ocean-governance/

Mbatha P, COP15: putting gender at the heart of biodiversity governance, https://www.iied.org/cop15-putting-gender-heart-biodiversity-governance

Merilainen L, Opening a platform for women in small-scale fisheries in Ghana, https://oneoceanhub.org/opening-a-platform-for-women-in-small-scale-fisheries-in-ghana/

New UN e-learning course on gender and the environment, https://oneoceanhub.org/new-un-e-learning-course-on-gender-and-the-environment/