Gender Equality Committee (ICA-GEC)

The Gender Equality Committee of the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA-GEC) is a catalyst for change to make gender equality a reality in all cooperatives and serves as forum for the discussion and exchange of experiences and ideas on issues related to gender equality. 

ICA-GEC mission and vision

The ICA-GEC's vision is of a cooperative movement led by women and men and based upon equity, solidarity, democracy, and development. In this vision, women's and men's values, skills, and contributions are valued equally and the organisation of work and decision-making structures are based on all people's needs and views. The realisation of this vision will not only make the cooperative movement and societies truly democratic and more successful but also contribute to the achievement of sustainable development, as outlined in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 

The Gender Equality Committee is a thematic committee of the International Cooperative Alliance which promotes equality between women and men and gender integration in the cooperative movement and society. It was formerly known as the Global Women's Committee.

Executive Committee

María Eugenia Pérez Zea, Colombia (Chair)

Xiomara Núñez de Céspedes, Dominican Republic (Vice-Chair)

Marjaana Saarikoski, Finland (Vice-Chair)

Nandini Azad, India (Chair Asia Pacific Women’s Committee -ICA-AP)

Esther N. Gicheru, Kenya (Chair of the Research and Women Committee of the ICA Africa)

Arti Bisaria, India

Vanya Boyuklieva, Central Co-operative Union, Bulgaria

Stefania Marcone, Alleanza Cooperative Italiane, Italy

Malena Riudavets, Spain

ICA-GEC in the regions

All the regions of the International Cooperative Alliance have created regional committees. The ICA-GEC liaises with Regional Committees devoted to gender in order to identify specific goals and how to deliver them.

Do you want to become a member?

Every year, ICA member organisations in good standing (i.e. current on ICA membership subscriptions) shall be eligible to nominate one representative to the ICA-GEC, provided the nominating organisation recognises the Constitution of the ICA-GEC.

To apply for membership in the ICA-GEC, interested Alliance member organisations must submit an application to the Secretary and the Chair of the Gender Equality Committee at least six weeks before the Annual Plenary Meeting. New membership applications will be shared with the Executive Committee members and approved by the ICA-GEC in its Annual Plenary Meeting.

Contact us

Get in touch with the Gender Equality Committee. 


    23 Aug 2023

    The Global Innovation Cooperative Summit (GICS) 2023 is…

    23 Aug 2023

    Today, the world is celebrating International Youth Day…