Women are the best drivers of growth, the best hope for reconciliation in conflict, and the best buffer against radicalization of youth, and the repetition of cycles of violence.
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Executive Director of UN Women
There is a complex nexus between gender and conflict, and the importance of not only involving women in peace efforts but, more importantly, also ensuring that peace efforts are sensitive to the challenges and needs of women. UNSCR 1325 and its subsequent resolutions established a comprehensive normative framework for a Women, Peace and Security agenda globally and on which much of the initiative today is steered. Importantly this normative framework links gender equality and women’s empowerment to sustainable peace. At the same time studies have shown that women’s participation in formal peace processes leads to a 35% increase in the probability of a peace agreement lasting at least 15 years.1 Similarly, a study of data over a twenty year period demonstrated that as the percentage of women in parliament increases by five percent, a state is five times less likely to use violence when faced with an international crisis.2 Gender equality has been shown to be the number one predictor of resilient and peaceful communities and, conversely, gender inequality is a predictor of conflict between and within states.
- Conciliation Resources. “Infographic: Supporting women’s meaningful participation in peace”. Accessed on 12/06/2017 at http://www.c-r.org/news-and-views/multimedia/supporting-womens-meaningful-participation-peace.
- NGO Working Group on Women, Peace and Security (2017). Mapping Women, Peace and Security in the UN Security Council: 2016. NGO Working Group on Women, Peace and Security, p. 1.