To secure peace and renewal, including women in peacebuilding is key


By Khetsiwe Dlamini, Chief of Staff to the Executive Director of UN Women

“Women’s leadership and the protection of women’s rights should always be at the forefront—and never an afterthought—in promoting international peace and security,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said recently.

The Secretary-General’s remarks provide a crucial strategic focus. Research, evidence, and experience underline that women’s leadership in peacebuilding increases overall operational effectiveness.

Women play an immeasurable role in preventing or de-escalating conflict, brokering local ceasefires, promoting cultures of peace and coexistence, and preventing recruitment of children as combatants. Yet the numbers show us that investment in women and girls—and willingness to ensure their involvement in peacebuilding efforts—is desperately low. In 2012-2013, just 6 per cent of aid to developing countries focused on gender equality as a principal objective, while a mere 2 per cent of aid for peace and security took primary aim at advancing gender equality.

This year the United Nations undertook three reviews of its work on peace and security—of peacekeeping, peacebuilding, and the women, peace, and security agenda. In October, the 400-plus page Global Study on the Implementation of Security Council Resolution 1325 presented the current body of evidence showing women’s engagement in peace and security increases our effectiveness and efficiency in all areas of work.

Read the full blog post on The World Bank Group’s website