State of the World’s Fathers

Research

The State of the World’s Fathers reports, landmark analyses of fatherhood and caregiving, draw upon research and statistics from hundreds of studies covering all countries in the world with available data.

Advocacy

An advocacy tool for the MenCare campaign, State of the World’s Fathers provides recommendations for policy and programmatic action. The reports target governments, employers, and individuals around the world to promote involved fatherhood and caregiving, revealing what has stalled progress toward global gender equality and laying out a bold agenda for men and boys doing 50 percent of the world’s unpaid care work.

Promundo led the development and dissemination of the first ever State of the World’s Fathers (SOWF) report in June 2015, as an advocacy platform of the MenCare campaign, which it co-coordinates globally. Launched in June 2015 in 10 cities around the world, the first SOWF report provides a periodic, data-driven snapshot of the state of men’s contributions to parenting and caregiving globally by addressing four issues related to fatherhood: unpaid care work in the home; sexual and reproductive health and rights, and maternal, newborn, and child health; men’s caregiving and violence against children and women; and child development.

Over the past 20 years, much has changed with regard to trends in fatherhood, caregiving, and unpaid work. However, although women now represent 40 percent of the paid workforce, and 50 percent of the world’s food producers, women on average still spend two to 10 times longer on caring for a child or older person than men do. Despite this, engaging men in caregiving is only just beginning to be recognized as an important way to advance the global gender equality agenda.

Using global data on men’s involvement in caregiving and maternal and child health, and on the connections between fatherhood and violence, the report provides the basis for concentrated social, political, and healthcare initiatives; broad institutional change; and public awareness to bring about a transformation toward equitable, involved fatherhood. It defines a global agenda for involving men and boys as part of the solution to achieve gender equality and positive outcomes in the lives of women, children, and men themselves.

Since its launch, the first SOWF report has been viewed more than 10,000 times, and it has received significant media attention, featured in news outlets reaching at least 2.2 billion across broadcast, online, and social media.

The report has also serves as a tool for activism and advocacy for Promundo and MenCare partners around the world, launched with government officials at the United States Congress, as well as at Parliaments in Sweden, the United Kingdom, Brazil, and more. The report’s executive summary has been or is in the process of being translated into Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Russian, Serbian, Albanian, and other languages, and regional or country-specific reports have been developed for Africa and for Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as for Australia, Brazil, Uganda, Pakistan, and the Netherlands.

Building on the successes of State of the World’s Fathers 2015, Promundo and a coalition of partners launched the first State of America’s Fathers (SOAF) report in June 2016. Like State of the World’s Fathers, it outlined out a clear vision and policy suggestions for engaging men – in the United States – to promote gender equality and positive outcomes for women, children, and men.

The 2017 State of the World’s Fathers: Time for Action report, a MenCare publication, was launched in June 2017, two years after the inaugural State of the World’s Fathers 2015. The 2017 report draws from nearly 100 research studies and reports, with data from nearly every country where it is available, to reveal what has stalled progress toward global gender equality and to lay out a bold agenda for men and boys doing fully 50 percent of the world’s unpaid care work.

Learn more: www.sowf.men-care.org.

Related Programs

  • MenCare: The MenCare campaign promotes men’s equal involvement in caregiving and equitable, nonviolent fatherhood practices around the world.
  • MenCare+: MenCare+ engages men as partners in maternal and child health and in sexual and reproductive health and rights.
  • Program P: Program P provides concrete strategies and activities to engage men globally in active fatherhood from their partner’s pregnancies through their children’s early years.