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Speak up for Women – The relationship between gender and corruption

Our project named “Speak up for Women” aims to explore the correlation between gender and corruption. In cooperation with the Hungarian Women’s Lobby, TI-Hungary explores four topics with the help of experts at four “Speak up for Women” club evenings. The topics examined are: the role of informal payments in healthcare, the economic and political leadership of women, and female activism.

As part of the program, TI-Hungary and the Hungarian Women’s Lobby made an exploratory research about the abuse of power in proceedings for violence against women and the risks of corruption in obstetric and gynaecological care, with the assistance of Borbála Juhász (Hungarian Women’s Lobby) and Mirjam Sági (ELTE). The aforementioned study was presented with high interest on March 26 at the Impact Hub in Budapest. At the event, after the presentation of the study, acknowledged health and women’s rights experts and activists discussed how to act effectively in order to reduce the maternity and gynecological gratuities and to judge impartially the affairs of women who have suffered violent crimes.

At our event in May we discussed the relationship between women and politics, specifically focusing on why women’s representation in the Hungarian Parliament is so low and what explains the higher representation of women in the European Parliament. At our request a study about the topic was published on At the event, we discussed the opportunities and the social context for introducing women’s quotas and other tools to increase women’s representation in Hungary, within the framework of a prestigious panel of experts and with the broadest possible participation in the political panel.

The short interviews with the participants of the event are summarized in the video below:

We also organized an event in September, where we discussed the role of women in social advocacy and activism with prominent female leaders in the civil sector. The main conclusion of the club night was that the institutions dedicated to the promotion of equal opportunities in Hungary perform poorly. This also contributes to the fact that women are still discriminated against in many areas.

The fourth and last club night was organized in November in cooperation with the Czech Embassy, with the title ‘Women in Business – Equal Opportunities, Equal Pay and Corporate Integrity’. At this event, we discussed how women are represented in the Hungarian corporate sphere, especially on the boards of companies, and how this affects the integrity of the companies concerned. As it turned out, the principle of “equal pay for equal work” is already a fundamental principle for larger companies, but the use of quotas is not always considered a good idea, as they rather believe in creating a level playing field and in providing career development training.

The study on the gender aspects of the treatment of maternity gratuity and violence against women by the authorities is available here.

The study named “Is it better to be a female politician in the European Parliament, than in the Hungarian Parliament?” is available here.


The project was supported by the Open Society Foundations.

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The detailed reports on the “Speak up for Women!” club events are available here:...

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