Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Girl Scouts Leads Effort to Launch National Girls’ Research Coalition

In Washington D.C. yesterday, Girl Scouts of the USA Chief Executive Officer Anna Maria Chávez and GSUSA Chief Research Executive Judy Schoenberg, participated in the first-ever White House Research Conference on Girls.

The White House Research Conference on Girls will bring together leading experts on issues uniquely affecting girls. At this conference, a group of individuals and organizations that conduct high-quality research on girls announced the formation of the first-ever National Girls’ Research Coalition, an effort to make research on girls more accessible and available to individuals in all sectors  In the coming months, the coalition plans to launch an online portal to serve as a clearinghouse for research on girls, with the goal of making such research available to service providers, educators, academics, advocates and members of the media and others whose work directly impacts girls’ lives.

During the White House Research Conference, Ms. Chávez spoke on a panel where she shared findings from The State of Girls: Unfinished Business, a groundbreaking report by the Girl Scout Research Institute (GSRI) emphasizing the economic, physical, and emotional health needs of American girls. Schoenberg discussed the new leadership landscape of girls and young women, presenting findings from GSRI’s Change It Up! What Girls Say about Redefining Leadership.

“Throughout the world, girls confront challenges that can affect everything from their cognitive development to their understanding of their role in their communities,” said Ms. Chavez.  “As the leading expert on girls, Girl Scouts is uniquely situated to understand the difficulties girls face, and to help the girl-serving community of organizations and nonprofits channel their research energy to maximize their impact for girls.”

More than half of American girls say they don't aspire to be leaders, turned off by the conventional conception of leadership as command and control, according to ChangeIt Up! What Girls Say About Redefining Leadership.

"It's clear from the research that girls today don't embrace the conventional style of leadership," Schoenberg. "It's simply not how they want to lead. Girls today appear to be redefining leadership in terms of being more inclusive and serving a larger purpose." Girl Scouts is proud to be collaborating with experts focused on helping girls reach their fullest potential through the establishment of the National Girls’ Research Coalition.