The conversation on gender equality has focused on the concerns of women and girls. But the needs of men and boys deserve equal attention. Minority men face even greater challenges.


Around the world, men and boys are lagging in 12 major areas:

  1. Education:
    • The World Bank reports, “more than 100 countries have lower levels of male secondary and tertiary education enrollment and completion. Learning poverty rates—the proportion of children unable to read and understand a simple text at 10 years of age—are higher for boys than for girls in all regions and almost all countries of the world.”
    • The OECD reveals, “boys are significantly more likely than girls to be disengaged from school, get lower marks, repeat grades, and play video games in their free time.” (Page 123)
  2. Health:
  3. Extreme Weather Deaths:
  4. Workplace Deaths and Injuries:
    • Fifteen times the number of occupational deaths, compared to women: Men: 6.2 deaths/100,000 workers, Women: 0.4/100,000 workers.
    • Nearly twice the number of occupational injuries as women. Men: 1,443/100,000 workers, Women: 755/100,000 workers.
  5. Legal System:
  6. Victims of Violence:
    • Males account for 78% of all homicide victims,
    • Among children 0-19 years old, boys account for 70% of all homicide victims.
    • Wartime deaths: “Estimates across conflicts classify men as between 1.3 and 8.9 times as likely to be killed in war as women.” The vast majority of these deaths befall civilians (Figure 2). Also see: Gendercide.
  7. Intimate Partner Violence and Abuse:
  8. Boys:
  9. Homelessness:
  10. Military Conscription:
    • Many countries have compulsory military service only for men. (The vast majority of military jobs are in non-combatant roles.)
    • Nine countries have compulsory military conscription for both men and women. But in three of these countries — Chad, Eritrea, and Israel — men are required to serve for more time than women.
  11. Reproductive and Adoption Rights:
  12. Media Portrayals:

The Basic Index of Gender Inequality, which measures childhood educational opportunities, healthy life expectancy, and overall life satisfaction, likewise reveals men have fallen behind women in 91 out of 134 countries. Other disparities have been documented in sex discrimination against men in hiring decisions, including for STEM positions.

But funding agencies continue favor females over males by more than a three-to-one margin, according to one analysis. These problems are occurring within the context of broader cultural challenges to men and masculinity.

Country-Level Analyses:


Men’s Equality Month is observed in November. #GenderEqualityForMen.