Everyone – from former US First Lady Michelle Obama to actor Arnold Schwarzenegger – is talking about the fight for equal women’s rights. To mark International Women’s Day on 8 March we’ve rounded up some of our favourite quotes.

  1. “Let’s be very clear: Strong men – men who are truly role models – don’t need to put down women to make themselves feel powerful. People who are truly strong lift others up. People who are truly powerful bring others together.”
    – Michelle Obama, former First Lady of the United States
  2. “Ignoring half of the world’s workforce means realising only half of the world’s economic potential. Policy makers and business leaders should act now to boost the participation, pay, and advancement of women in education and in the workforce… Women’s rights are human rights but they are also a key determinant of economic prosperity.”
    – Laura D’Andrea Tyson, professor in the Haas School of Business, University of California
  3. “Gender equality doesn’t require trade-offs; it only has benefits. And the benefits accrue to everyone, not just women and girls. Societies benefit and, as even men are beginning to understand, economies benefit, too.”
    – Jim Yong Kim, World Bank Group President
  4. “In most nations, men largely occupy the seats of power. Relying exclusively on women to lead change on gender equality is therefore illogical. We need decent, powerful men to step up beside women to create a more gender equal world.”
    – Elizabeth Broderick, founder of Male Champions for Change
  5. We need decent, powerful men to step up beside women to create a more gender equal world.

  6. “In the future, there will be no female leaders. There will just be leaders.” 
    Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO and author of Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead
  7. “In our society, the women who break down barriers are those who ignore limits.” – Arnold Schwarzenegger, actor, politician
  8. “How wrong it is for a woman to expect the man to build the world she wants, rather than to create it herself.” – Anaïs Nin, diarist and writer
  9. “The thing women must do to rise to power is to redefine their femininity. Once, power was considered a masculine attribute. In fact, power has no sex.” – Katharine Graham, American publisher
  10. “Gender equality is more than a goal in itself. It is a precondition for meeting the challenge of reducing poverty, promoting sustainable development and building good governance.”
    – Kofi Annan, Nobel Peace Prize winner and former Secretary-General of the UN
  11. “A gender-equal society would be one where the word ‘gender’ does not exist: where everyone can be themselves.” – Gloria Steinem, feminist and social political activist