The Refugee: A Male Definition, a Male Practice?

By Milena Österreicher When you read about refugees in the morning newspaper, hear some refugee-related news on the radio or watch a report on that same topic on television, how often is it that you read about, hear from, or see a female refugee? Women (and girls) tend to be a forgotten topic in the refugee context. Looking at the bare numbers, that might be a surprise. According to UN Women, they represent almost half of the 19.6 million refugees worldwide.


Romania – LGBTI Rights: Accession too soon? Better something than nothing.

By Charles Slidders Romania has a deeply entrenched homophobic culture and, together with Slovakia, competes for the title of the most homophobic country in Europe. Despite joining the European Union and the Council of Europe, and purportedly adopting European values, the country continues to hold deeply prejudicial views of homosexuals. According to the 2015 Eurobarometer public opinion survey, only 36 per cent of Romanians believe that gay, lesbian and bisexual people should have the same rights as heterosexuals, only 24 per cent believe there is nothing wrong with a relationship between two people of the same sex, and only 21 per cent think gay marriage should be legal across Europe.


Taking the World by Storm(ont): Power Sharing in Northern Ireland

By Ashley Reynolds Home to one of the longest conflicts in post-WWII Europe, Northern Ireland continues to deal with the legacy of The Troubles and its resulting political consequences. The Troubles, which lasted from 1969 to 1998, caused more than 3,300 deaths and 47,500 injuries across the territory. While several parties were involved in the violence, two main groups dominated the political landscape: nationalists, who believe Northern Ireland should be part of the Republic of Ireland, and unionists, who believe Northern Ireland should remain in the United Kingdom.


How Your Gender Impacts Your Health

By Liesbet Debecker Recently, I was struck down by one of the severe migraines that have plagued me since puberty. In between trying not to cry or vomit from the pain, I struggled for an answer as to why there was no efficient cure for something so debilitating. As it turns out the answer is not a pleasant one: migraines predominantly affect women and as a result of this, according to multiple academics, have remained largely ignored by science. Unfortunately, this is not the only way that gender affects health. From the actual ailments suffered to diagnosis and treatment, there are a lot of differences based on sex in the way healthcare is received.


Uncovered: the Complicated Relationship between Sport and Hijab

By Cassandra Bockstael Sport is consistently based in discrimination. Often competitions are single gender exclusive, categories are created depending on weight, age, (dis)ability or nationality. This organisation of the sport system is based on what would, in any other context, amount to illegal discrimination. Yet almost all major sporting competitions are structured around those rules. Consequently, this raises the question of when and to what extent are those conditions allowed?


UN Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration: Challenges and Opportunities

By Myriam Erquicia Leon Since 2000, migration has increased by 49%, and currently 3.4% of World’s population are migrants. This should not surprise us. Migration is a phenomenon that has always existed and will always exist. Nevertheless, it is true that the number of forcibly displaced persons is at a historically high level. For a few years now, we have been talking about the “migration crisis”, particularly in Europe, but is it really a migration crisis or a crisis of the governance of migration?


Timor-Leste: How Food Shortages are Affecting Development

By Alice Gould Timor-Leste is one of the world’s newest countries, only claiming independence in 2002. Its government, which is progressive towards development, and its very young population (the median age of Timor-Leste is 18.9) have the potential to develop the country through a strong work force and commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals. However, food insecurity and its results are negatively affecting Timor-Leste’s capacity to develop.


Towards a More Progressive Realization of 2nd Generation Rights: Universal Basic Income in Latin America

The seemingly inexorable growth of the income inequality gap is worrying economists, politicians, academia and activists alike, as its consequences place the majority in a pitfall of financial insecurity. Latin America continues to be the most unequal region of the world. The effects of stark income inequality are tangibly felt through the prevalence of poverty, which is strongly tied to poor public health, food insecurity, unfavorable living conditions, increased crime, and lack of a formal education.


The World Bank: From Reluctance to a Human Rights Conscious Institution?

By Mustapha Hadji The Bretton Woods institutions have for long been criticized for putting human rights in the backseat of their priorities. The World Bank, for instance, has for many decades used the concept of “political prohibition” as a pretext to not uphold human rights. Non-interference in the political and internal affairs of a sovereign State is something that many would agree on. However, the concept of non-interference is not an absolute one and sovereignty has eroded due to the development of international law and its spread to spaces that were exclusive domains of States. Moreover, globalization and the interconnectedness it has engendered have also contributed to the erosion of sovereignty and given it a rather malleable meaning.