News & Views

Council Commentary

“Passion Is Our Fuel but Not Our Plan”

"Why are we so slow to see, count, or reach the 200 million poorest girls?" asks Council expert Judith Bruce in "The adolescent girl moment: Passion is our fuel but not our plan," on Girls' Globe.

In a guest commentary published today, Bruce urges the global community to invest in targeted, evidence-based, scalable programs for real girls in real places. Improving the health, economic, and cognitive assets of adolescent girls will bring measurable, lasting change and guarantee the well-being and economic preparedness of the next generation.

Population Briefs

Meeting the Needs of Adolescent Girls: Using Research to Develop and Implement Programs that Improve Girls’ Lives

Meeting the Needs of Adolescent Girls: Using Research to Develop and Implement Programs that Improve Girls’ Lives
Photo credit: Population Council

In Zambia, Population Council researchers are implementing and evaluating the Adolescent Girls Empowerment Program (AGEP) using a randomized control trial, in order to provide strong evidence of the intervention’s impact. AGEP will enroll 10,000 poor adolescent girls and address their social isolation, economic vulnerability, and lack of access to vital health services.

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Population Briefs

The Influence of Rural Women’s Autonomy on Marital Violence in Four Indian States

The Influence of Rural Women’s Autonomy on Marital Violence in Four Indian States
Photo credit: Population Council

There is evidence that women in India who have more education than their husbands, who earn more, or who are the sole earners in their families have a higher likelihood of experiencing intimate partner violence (IPV) than women who are not employed or who are less educated than their spouse. However, recent Population Council research found women’s autonomy to be correlated with less IPV in some regions.

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Population Briefs

Ensuring that Family Planning Programs Respect, Protect, and Fulfill Women’s Rights

Ensuring that Family Planning Programs Respect, Protect, and Fulfill Women’s Rights
Photo credit: Population Council

In the developing world, 222 million women would like to delay or avoid pregnancy but are not using modern contraceptives. At the 2012 London Summit on Family Planning, the international community made a commitment to reduce this unmet need by reaching 120 million women and girls from the world’s poorest countries with voluntary access to family planning information, contraceptives, and services by 2020, an agreement known as FP2020.

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Population Briefs

Preclinical Study Shows Microbicide Gel’s Effectiveness Against HIV and Other Viruses

Preclinical Study Shows Microbicide Gel’s Effectiveness Against HIV and Other Viruses
Photo credit: Population Council

Results of a recent animal study offer new optimism for microbicides, biomedical products being developed to protect people against sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV. Population Council scientists and their partners have found that a proprietary microbicide gel developed by the Council is safe, stable, and can prevent the transmission of HIV, herpes simplex virus 2 (HSV-2), and human papillomavirus (HPV), in both the vagina and rectum in animals. It has a window of efficacy in the vagina against all three viruses of at least eight hours prior to exposure. An in vitro study also provides the first data that the gel is effective against multiple strains of HIV.

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Media Coverage

Ending Child Marriage

A new Time magazine article on the US–Africa Leaders Summit highlights the human rights violation that is child marriage, as well as solutions and players working to stop it, including the Population Council.

The Council’s Berhane Hewan project, which significantly reduced child marriage and increased schooling among enrolled girls aged 10–14, was discussed at a Summit side event on ending child marriage hosted by the International Center for Research on Women along with Human Rights Watch and the International Women's Health Coalition. 

From Our Partners

Rights-Based Family Planning: Importance of Increased Access

This post is part of a monthly blog series profiling viewpoints from leaders in reproductive health who are members of the Bellagio Group on Long-Acting Reversible Contraception. The Bellagio Group is a coalition of experts who convene annually to discuss practices for expanding contraceptive choice and accelerating progress toward the Millennium Development Goal of universal access to reproductive health services. This post represents the views of the author and is not a representation of the Population Council or the Bellagio Group. Please direct any questions to the author at cfitzgerald@womancareglobal.org.

Two weeks ago, I observed a focus group in Lusaka, Zambia, where a moderator from a South African marketing agency spoke with eight young women about their views on contraception. Joined by a local researcher, a program manager, and marketers, I watched the session next door through a live television feed. Our goal was to get a head start on the development of marketing strategies for new contraceptive products—a project funded by USAID. In that small room in the Lusaka office building, we huddled around the television listening to these women’s opinions about different contraceptive options, hoping to understand how they make decisions about which methods to use and how the public health community can better meet their needs.

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Press Releases

Population Council to Present New Research on Key Populations at International AIDS Conference

Findings Will Highlight Risk Factors, Strategies to Improve Service Delivery for Men Who Have Sex with Men, People Who Inject Drugs, and Women

NEW YORK (15 July 2014) — The Population Council will present new research on HIV and key populations at the 20th International AIDS Conference (AIDS2014) in Melbourne, Australia, 20–25 July 2014.

Oral presentations will focus on the HIV risk behaviors of men who have sex with men, the scale-up and sustainability of community-led HIV responses developed for key affected populations, and promoting gender equity among women. 

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