Dubravka Šimonović, former Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences (2015-2021)

Dubravka Šimonović, Special Rapporteur on Violence against Women, its causes and consequences © OHCHRMs. Dubravka Šimonovic was appointed as United Nations Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences in June 2015 by the UN Human Rights Council for an initial three years' tenure (maximum tenure of six years). She started her tenure on 1 August 2015 and had her mandate renewed in 2018 for three additional years.

Ms. Šimonović was a member of the CEDAW Committee between 2002 and 2014, and served as its Chairperson in 2007 and 2008, its follow-up Rapporteur from 2009 to 2011 and as the Chairperson of the Optional Protocol Working Group in 2011.

At the regional level, in 2006 and 2007, she was the Chair and Vice Chair of the Council of Europe’s Task Force to combat violence against women, including domestic violence, that proposed the adoption of the new Council of Europe Convention on violence against women. Between 2008 and 2010, she co-chaired the Ad hoc Committee (CAHVIO) that elaborated the Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence (the Istanbul Convention).

For a number of years she headed the Human Rights Department at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Croatia and was posted as the Minister Plenipotentiary at the Permanent Mission of Croatia to the United Nations in New York.  She was also the Ambassador to the OSCE and United Nations in Vienna, Austria. She was the Chairperson of the UN Commission on the Status of Women between 2001 and 2002 and also worked as a member of the UNIFEM Consultative Committee.

Ms. Šimonović holds a PhD in family law from the University of Zagreb. She is the author of several books and articles on women’s rights and violence against women. She also lectured at the Harvard Law School, Nottingham University, Urban Morgan Institute for Human Rights (University of Cincinnati) and at the Women’s Human Rights Training Institute organized by the Bulgarian Gender Research Foundation. Dr. Dubravka Šimonovic was a Visiting Professor in Practice in the Centre for Women, Peace and Security at LSE from 2016 to 2018.

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