Facts and Figures: Peace and Security

At the peace table:

  • Out of 585 peace agreements from 1990 to 2010, only 92 contained any references to women [1].
  • In 2014, half of all signed peace agreements included references to women, peace and security [2].
  • Between 1992 and 2011, fewer than four per cent of signatories to peace agreements and less than 10 per cent of negotiators at peace tables were women [3].
  • Women’s participation increases the probability of peace agreements lasting at least two years by 20 per cent. It also increases the probability of a peace agreement lasting 15 years by 35 per cent [4].

Women’s leadership:

  • In conflict-affected countries, women’s share of seats in parliament is four percentage points below the global average of 22 per cent, and women occupy only 14.8 per cent of ministerial positions [5].
  • The percentage of UN field missions headed by women has fluctuated between 15 and 25 per cent since 2011 [6].
  • In the summer of 2014, six women ambassadors served on the UN Security Council, putting women’s representation at an unprecedented 40 per cent [7].
  • Only 13 per cent of stories in the news media on peace- and security-related themes included women as the subject, and women were central to the story in only six per cent of the cases. Only four per cent of the stories portrayed women as leaders in conflict and post-conflict countries, and only two per cent highlighted gender equality issues [8].

Health, education and livelihood:

  • Approximately half of children of primary school age who are not in school live in conflict-affected areas. Girls, whose adjusted net enrolment rate in primary education is only 77.5 per cent in conflict and post-conflict countries, are particularly affected [9].
    See related infographic.
  • In conflict and post-conflict countries, maternal mortality is on average 2.5 times higher [10]. More than half of the world’s maternal deaths occur in conflict-affected and fragile states, with the 10 worst-performing countries on maternal mortality all either conflict or post-conflict countries [11].
  • Only nine per cent of landholders in conflict and post-conflict countries are women, compared to 19 per cent globally [12].
  • Prioritizing women in food distribution is strongly correlated with greater dietary diversity and, in Mindanao, a 37 percent lower prevalence of hunger [13].

Justice and security:

  • In 2015, 97 per cent of military peacekeepers and 90 per cent of police personnel are men 14].
  • According to data collected between 2006 and 2010, female voters are four times as likely as men to be targeted for intimidation in elections in fragile and transitional states [15].
  • Twenty-seven countries have legal provisions that prevent mothers from conferring their nationality to children on an equal basis as fathers, which can lead to children being stateless [16].
  • Forty per cent of convictions of individuals at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia include sexual violence charges [17].
  • Reports from the Democratic Republic of the Congo on the extent of conflict-related sexual violence range from 18 per cent to 40 per cent among women and girls and between four and 24 per cent among men and boys [18].
  • One in four households of all Syrian refugee families in Egypt, Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan are headed by women [19]. In Mali, more than 50 per cent of displaced families are headed by women [20].
  • Before the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, the average age for marriage for a girl was between 20 and 25 years. In the refugee camps during and after the genocide, the average age for marriage was 15 years [21].
  • The rate of early marriage [below the age of 18] among Syrian refugee girls in Jordan is 51 per cent [22], compared to between 13 and 17 per cent inside Syria before the war [23].
  • Data from 40 countries shows a positive correlation between the proportion of female police and reporting rates of sexual assault [24].

Peacebuilding and recovery:

  • In the context of early recovery programmes, only 22 per cent of funds from cash contributions were directly disbursed to women in 2013 [25].
  • In 2014, women only received 35 per cent of benefits from temporary employment activities from disarmament, demobilization and reintegration programmes [26].
  • Only one per cent of bilateral official development assistance for security system management reform targeted gender equality as a principal objective in 2014, and only 26 per cent targeted it as a significant objective [27].
  • Only two per cent of aid to fragile states and economies in 2012 and 2013 targeted gender equality as a principal objective, and only USD 130 million out of almost USD 32 billion of total aid went to women’s equality organizations and institutions [28].
  • In Sierra Leone, a survey asked predominantly male ex-combatants to identify those who played a significant role in helping them reintegrate; 55 per cent named women in the community [29].

Notes

[1] Bell, Christine and C. O’Rourke (2010) “Peace Agreements or Pieces of Paper? The Impact of UNSC Resolution 1325 on Peace Processes and their Agreements,” International and Comparative Law Quarterly, p. 59.

[2] UN Security Council (2015). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security ; and UN Security Council (2014), Report of the Secretary-General on women and peace and security, p. 5.

[3] UN Women (2012). UN Women Sourcebook on Women, Peace and Security, p. 5.

[4] Based on a forthcoming publication by Laurel Stone, whose summary findings were cited in Coomaraswamy, Radhika (2015) Preventing Conflict, Transforming Justice, and Securing the Peace: A Global Study on Implementation of Security Council resolution 1325. p.41-42

[5] Inter-Parliamentary Union (2015). Parline database query and UN Security Council (2015). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security, S/2015/716. p. 10.

[6] UN Security Council (2015). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security. p.37-38

[7] UN Security Council (2014). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security. p. 10.

[8] Coomaraswamy, Radhika (2015). Preventing Conflict, Transforming Justice, and Securing the Peace: A Global Study on Implementation of Security Council resolution 1325

[9] UN Security Council (2014). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security, p. 26.

[10] UN Women calculations based on data from Maternal Mortality Estimation Inter-Agency Group estimates and birth estimates of the Population Division’s World Population Prospects. Cited in the SG report, S/2014/693. p. 27.

[11] Save the Children (2014), State of the World’s Mothers 2014: Saving Mothers and Children in Humanitarian Crises. p. 12. and Coomaraswamy, Radhika (2015). Preventing Conflict, Transforming Justice, and Securing the Peace: A Global Study on Implementation of Security Council resolution 1325. p.76

[12] UN Security Council (2015). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security; and UN Security Council (2014). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security, p. 22.

[13] UN Women (2015). The Effect of Gender Equality Programming in Humanitarian Outcomes, p. 10.

[14] UN Security Council (2015). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security ; and UN Security Council (2014). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security. p.27.

[15] IFES (2011). Breaking the Cycle of Gender Violence, p. 16.

[16] UNHCR (2013). Annual Survey on Gender Discrimination in Nationality Laws, p. 1.

[17] International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia website, accessed October 2014.

[18] UNICEF (2014). Hidden in Plain Sight: A statistical analysis of violence against children, p. 68.

[19] UNHCR (2014). Woman Alone: The fight for survival by Syria’s refugee women, p. 8.

[20] Norwegian Refugee Council (2014). Global Overview 2014: People internally displaced by conflict and violence, p. 30.

[21] Women’s Refugee Commission (2014). Strong Girls, Powerful Women: Program Planning and Design for Adolescent Girls in Humanitarian Settings, p. 4.

[22] UN Women (2013). Gender-Based Violence and Child Protection Among Syrian Refugees in Jordan, with a Focus on Early Marriage, p. 29.

[23] Central Bureau of Statistics Pan-Arab Project for Family Health/League of Arab States and UNICEF (February 2008) “Syrian Arab Republic: Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2006”; and UNICEF (2011) The State of the World’s Children: Adolescence: An Age of Opportunity, 2011, p. 122; both cited in Danielle Spencer, To Protect Her Honour’ Child Marriage in Emergencies - the Fatal Confusion between Protecting Girls and Sexual Violence, p. 6–7.

[24] UN Women (2012). Progress of the Worlds Women: In Pursuit of Justice, p. 59.

[25] UN Security Council (2014). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security, p. 23.

[26] UN Security Council (2014). Report of the Secretary-General on women, peace and security, p. 19.

[27] Analysis of bilateral sector allocable official development assistance by OECD/DAC donors, cited in Coomaraswamy, Radhika (2015). Preventing Conflict, Transforming Justice, and Securing the Peace: A Global Study on Implementation of Security Council resolution 1325. p.376

[28] ibid.

[29] O’Neill, Jacqueline (2015) Institute for Inclusive Security. Engaging Women in Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration: Insights for Colombia, p. 3; Mazurana, Dylan and Carlson, Khristopher (2004). Women Waging Peace, the Policy Commission, Hunt Alternatives Fund: From Combat to Community: Women and Girls of Sierra Leone, p. 4-5.

[Page updated October 2015.]