News & Views

Council Commentary

Population Council Scholarly Journals: Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Population Council publishes two leading scholarly journals: Population and Development Review and Studies in Family Planning. For more than fifty years, peer-reviewed social science, public health, and demographic research in these publications has played a pivotal role in shaping the field and building the evidence base for improving policy and practice around the world.

We are proud of our journals’ impact and global community of authors, reviewers, and readers, while acknowledging that we need to do more to accelerate change internally and in our field. 

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Council Commentary

Population Council Welcomes Carmencita Whonder as New Trustee

Population Council Welcomes Carmencita Whonder as New Trustee

NEW YORK, NEW YORK (November 29, 2021)—The Population Council is pleased to announce the appointment of Carmencita Whonder to its Board of Trustees.  

Carmencita brings a wealth of expertise, particularly in finance and public policy, as well as experience working globally across multiple disciplines. She is currently policy director at Brownstein Hyatt Faber Schreck, the leading lobbying and law firm in the U.S. An expert in financial services and housing finance policy, she also regularly represents clients from these industries before the U.S. Congress, White House, and international financial institutions. She advises Fortune 500 companies, startup CEOs, executive teams, and boards of directors on public policy, regulatory affairs, product development, strategic communications, crisis and risk management, corporate philanthropy, and diversity and inclusion. 

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Council Commentary

The Population Council Joins BankFWD to Accelerate the Banking Sector’s Alignment with Global Climate Goals by Phasing Out Fossil Fuel Finance

The United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) ended over the weekend with agreements that fall short of its goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C – needed if we are to avoid the most catastrophic effects of climate change. While the Glasgow Climate Pact produced numerous positive climate policies and commitments, their collective impact (if current pledges are fulfilled) is only estimated to limit global warming to 2.4°C – an increase that would be catastrophic to people and the planet. To keep the possibility of limiting global warming to no more than 1.5°C, the world must now implement and surpass its latest COP26 commitments with increased national, sub-national, and institutional climate action.

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Council Commentary

Sharing Progress on the Population Council’s Agenda for Change

In June 2020, the Population Council joined organizations around the world to condemn incidents of racial violence, police violence, and racism toward Black Americans and asserted our intolerance for silence and inaction. We made a commitment—to our ourselves, our colleagues, our partners and peers, our donors, and the individuals and communities with whom we work—to undertake the hard work of looking inward and examining what more we could and should be doing to create a more just and equitable world both in the work we do and in how we operate. The following month, based on discussions with Council colleagues in the US and our international offices, we launched our Agenda for Change—setting out actions we will take to become an antiracist organization and address wider issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).

The Agenda for Change commits us to embrace antiracist principles and actions; to build a strong culture grounded in DEI; to continue efforts to decentralize our global efforts to better respond to the needs of the populations we serve; and to ensure our evidence and analysis continue to influence those who have the power and resources to improve the lives of the poorest and most marginalized populations around the world. 

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Council Commentary

In Memoriam: Former Population Council President George Zeidenstein (July 29, 1929 – August 21, 2021)

The Population Council mourns the passing of George Zeidenstein, the Council’s fifth President, who died on August 21, 2021 aged 92 in Goshen, Connecticut. Zeidenstein leaves behind a powerful legacy from his long tenure as Population Council President from 1976 to 1992; his contributions continue to influence our work and our field today. Zeidenstein was instrumental in shaping the Council’s long-standing mission of promoting access to broader sexual and reproductive health services and technological innovations and to ensuring that quality services be focused on meeting the needs of the populations facing the greatest vulnerability.

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Council Commentary

Mirena® added to UNFPA and USAID Product Catalogs

An exciting milestone for contraceptive access worldwide, the levonorgestrel-releasing intrauterine system (LNG IUS), also known as the hormonal intrauterine device (IUD), has been added to the USAID and UNFPA Product Catalogs for the first time in the product’s 30 year history. Over the past 65 years, the Population Council has developed and introduced several of the world’s most effective and popular contraceptive methods, including the LNG IUS distributed by Bayer as Mirena®

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Council Commentary

Welcoming New VP for Corporate Finance & Administration

The Population Council is pleased to announce the appointment of Tony Dutson as Vice President for Corporate Finance and Administration (CF&A). Dutson will oversee the financial, administrative, and organizational health efforts of the Population Council working in close collaboration with fellow Executive Team members, including two newly appointed Vice Presidents. These three appointments complete the Executive Leadership Team.

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Council Commentary

A Year Into the Pandemic

This past year, the coronavirus pandemic has impacted every country, every community, and every person in this world – but not equally nor in the same ways. For communities who experience vulnerability and marginalization, because structural barriers such as economic inequality, racism, harmful gender norms, and numerous other intertwining factors, even before the COVID-19 pandemic, these challenges have been exacerbated and inequalities even further exposed.

Knowing the potential impacts the pandemic could pose on individuals and communities, we leveraged proven tools and strategies we have used in other global health crises, and rapidly deployed them across 13 countries—often generating and sharing data in real-time. These efforts to provide context-specific data on what was happening, to whom, and the potential risks to their health and wellbeing helped, and continue to inform, the decision making of health authorities and policy makers in India, Kenya, Mexico and many other countries.

Our Research in Humanitarian Settings Task Force (HTF) has been leading the Council’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. These researchers and scientists are working with partners around the world to continue to tackle the damaging impact of the pandemic on the health, education, and economic sectors using their expertise in biomedical research and social and behavioral science research. Below we share highlights from our continued COVID-19 response and invite you to visit our new Research in Humanitarian Settings webpage to learn more and access the latest data and perspective on our ongoing COVID-19 response.

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