Past Events & News

Information on events that occurred within the past year is available under Events & News: Recent Events.

Past Events & News

Auditorium Jacques-Freymond Rue de Lausanne, 132 Geneva
Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Panel: Research Frontiers in Gender and Sustainable Peace
How does peace become sustainable and what role do gender relations play in the creation of sustainable peace? The question pre-occupies both academics and policy-makers. Scholarly research has postulated that there is a correlation between gender equality and the likelihood that countries solve conflicts violently. Conversely, in the policy world, there is an ongoing push for convergence between post-war humanitarian and development approaches with an eye towards fostering the structural changes necessary to make peace sustainable.
The proposed study day will provide an opportunity for interested stakeholders in the international Geneva policy network to engage with recent scholarship in the field of gender and peacebuilding. It seeks to accomplish two purposes, i.e.
  • To introduce recent findings from feminist research on gender and peacebuilding, and provide an opportunity to discuss such research from a policy perspective;
  • To develop the policy implications of this research and the outlines of feminist roadmap towards sustainable peace.
Keynote Address
Carol Cohn (University of Massachusetts, Boston; Consortium on Gender, Security and Human Rights)
Beyond the “Women, Peace and Security” Agenda: Why We Need a Feminist Roadmap for Sustainable Peace​

Pocantico Center, Tarrytown, NY
Wednesday, May 24, 2017 to Thursday, May 25, 2017


Consortium Director Carol Cohn participated in the Ploughshares Fund's event "Women Talk Security, Nukes and Democracy" from May 24-25, 2017. The convening was part of Ploughshare Fund's Women's Initiative, "bringing together a network of women from both inside and outside the nuclear security field to build a new and inclusive national security and foreign policy platform. This platform will be rooted in a shared belief that security policies must be inclusive, incorporate perspectives not traditionally associated with national security, and recognize that individuals and local communities, not simply nation-states, are also key constituencies affected by these policies. Our goal is that all people in the network will learn from each other, and bring a common-sense security platform back into their work whether it be as an activist or in the policy community." (Ploughshares 2017 Annual Report)


United Nations Office at Geneva Palais des Nations, 1211 Genève Room XIX
Thursday, April 27, 2017
From 26-28 April 2017, over 150 leading women's rights and peace activists from around the world gathered at the United Nations office in Geneva for "Reclaiming the United Nations as a Peace Organization: Ensuring Women’s Meaningful Participation for Peace and Strengthening Multilateralism," a conference convened by the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. Consortium Director Carol Cohn spoke on the panel "Feminist Perspectives on Sustainable Peace."
Panel: Feminist Perspectives on Sustainable Peace
Advancing feminist peace requires both acting differently and thinking differently about peace, security, economic and social justice. Sustaining peace is not possible without meaningful participation and inclusion of root cause analysis from a feminist lens. The connection between political and economic processes are highly gendered in nature and impact participation in governance, decision making and the economy. Building meaningful participation and feminist analysis into these processes is critical for preventing, addressing and rebuilding from conflict, and sustaining peace. What solutions can feminist perspectives provide to challenge the status quo? 
Moderator: Elisabeth Prügl, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies
Nela Porobić Isaković, Women Organizing for Change, WILPF Initiative, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Rosa Emilia Salamanca, Director of CIASE, Colombia
Carol Cohn, Founding Director, Consortium on Gender, Security and Human Rights
Khanim Latif, Director of Asuda, Iraq 

Harvard Law School
Thursday, April 6, 2017

Public Lecture: “Nuclear Chimeras: Britain’s Slow Death as a Nuclear Power."

Location: Harvard Law School, Austin Hall 111.
Keynote Speaker: Jonathon Porritt (Forum for the Future)
Porritt is a British environmentalist and writer, author most recently of The World We Made (Phaidon 2015). He has been a longstanding campaigner against nuclear power.
With Commentary from panelists:
Carol Cohn (University of Massachusetts, Boston)
Allison Macfarlane (George Washington University)
Jayita Sarkar (MIT)
Daniel Schrag (Harvard University Center for the Environment)

Wiston House, Wilton Park, Steyning, West Sussex UK
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Gender Dynamics in Peace and Conflict
To what extent has women’s involvement in radicalisation and armed groups changed gender manifestations in conflict? How are African women’s organisations working to both drive and resolve violence? To what extent have women and women’s organisations been included in formal peace processes, or designated as negotiators? What measures can be taken to ensure that all stakeholders, especially women, share the peacebuilding process and take equal ownership?
Chair: Carol Cohn
Director, Consortium on Gender, Security and Human Rights, University of Massachusetts Boston
Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah (via video recording)
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of International Relations And Cooperation, Government of the Republic of Namibia, Windhoek
Awino Okech
Lecturer, Centre for Gender Studies, School of African Studies (SOAS), London
Comfort Lamptey
Regional Adviser on Governance, Peace and Security, Regional Office for West and Central Africa, UN Women, Dakar

U.S. Institute of Peace 2301 Constitution Ave, NW, Washington, DC
Monday, March 13, 2017
Countries emerging from violent conflict face critical decisions from the outset. The way public resources are managed and public goods and services distributed becomes crucial to sustaining peace. In the influx of aid and technical support, the particular needs of women and girls often are overlooked. Join the U.S. Institute of Peace on Monday, March 13, for a discussion with experts about ways to ensure equality in reconstruction budgets and public finance institutions.
Financial management systems that oversee functions such as tax collection, budget tracking or building infrastructure often are established rapidly in countries recovering from violent conflict. But these structures often aren’t built with consideration for the specific needs of women and girls, such as women’s ability to own property when redrafting land reform or women’s mobility when addressing road construction. The result is a missed opportunity to address structural gender inequality from the start.
Panelists will discuss how to better integrate gender analysis into public finance, and opportunities for women’s participation in economic structures. Join the conversation on Twitter #USIPGender.
Carol Cohn

Director, Consortium on Gender, Security and Human Rights, University of Massachusetts Boston

Thomas Scherer

Program Officer, Economics and Peacebuilding, U.S. Institute of Peace
Janet Stotsky 

Economist and Visiting Scholar, International Monetary Fund
Moderator: Carla Koppell

Vice President, Applied Conflict Transformation, U.S. Institute of Peace

International Studies Association (ISA) 58th Annual Convention, Baltimore, MD
Wednesday, February 22, 2017
Dr. Claire Duncanson (University of Edinburgh) and Consortium Director Carol Cohn presented "Tackling Neoliberal Post-War Reconstruction Models: The Post-2015 Agenda for Women, Peace and Security Advocates" on the panel "Gender and Power After Violence" at the International Studies Association (ISA) 58th Annual Convention in Baltimore, MD, on February 22, 2017. 
Feminist critiques of the United Nation’s Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda have been many and varied – from concern about the narrowing of the agenda to a predominant focus on sexual violence to frustration at the slow process of implementation. However, a new strand of feminist criticism suggests that even if the WPS agenda were to be fully implemented, gender equitable peacebuilding would be unlikely to occur. This criticism focuses on the insight that even the best peace agreement can be (and often has been) radically undercut by the political economic processes of post-war reconstruction. This paper presents an overview of the argument that it is post-war reconstruction policies, such as extractive industry exploitation of fossil fuels and minerals, the selling-off of land for export agribusiness, and the privatization of state-owned enterprises and services – which are too often treated as strictly technical, apolitical matters – that will determine whether the potential for sustainable, inclusive, gender-equitable peace and security will be realized or jeopardized. It also makes the case for WPS advocates to place more emphasis on these economic strategies of post-conflict reconstruction; and sets out the elements of a feminist research agenda which would support such advocacy.

PRIO, Hausmanns gate 3, Oslo
Monday, January 16, 2017

​​​​The PRIO Centre on Gender, Peace and Security, NOREF and the Consortium for Gender, Security and Human Rights invite you to a public seminar on gendered analyses of public finance institutions and mechanisms in countries emerging from violent conflict.

​The management of public finance constitutes a critical means of supporting political settlements and of advancing more equitable, just and sustainable peace. Given the growing interest in peace agreement im​​plementation and mechanisms, the creation of a state with the capacity to manage public resources, to provide public goods and to respond to citizen demands is a crucial component (Boyce & O’Donnell, 2007). Yet, states and societies emerging from violent conflict tend to face particular challenges in establishing functioning public finance systems and addressing gendered structural inequities exacerbated by years of violent conflict.

Following a political settlement, reconstruction budgets are one important public finance vehicle for addressing structural gender inequities. Despite the influx of reconstruction aid following a political settlement, state planning and budgets processes continue to overlook and exclude women’s needs and ​rights (with estimates ranging from 1-6% as being allocated for gender equality programming).  The rapid rebuilding of national economic structures which characterises countries emerging from violent conflict tends to proceed without women’s participation. And it typically neglects both gender equality concerns and women’s needs, leaving many to struggle to cover their most basic needs despite the influx of international aid.

This diverse panel of experts will provide preliminary findings and insights from a recent knowledge-generating workshop on ho​​w to integrate gendered analyses of public finance institutions and mechanisms into planning for countries emerging from violent conflict. The panellists will each present briefly, before opening up for a wider discussion.

  • James K. Boyce is an economist and expert on post-conflict public finance at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. His books include: Peace and the Public Purse: Economic Policies for Postwar Statebu​ilding; Investing in Peace: Aid and Conditionality after Civil Wars; and Economic Policy for Building Peace: The Lessons of El Salvador.
  • Carol Cohn is an expert on gender, peace, conflict and security studies and on gendered institutions. She is director of the Consortium on Gender, Security and Human Rights. Her publications in the field of gender and security include a textbook, Women & Wars.
  • Kade Finnoff is a development economist at the Azim Premji University in India. Her work focuses primarily on countries emerging from violent conflict, and she has written academic articles and policy-oriented reports on gender and public finance, gender budgeting of post-conflict development assistance, labour market policy, intimate partner violence, inequality and poverty.
  • Janet Stotsky is an economist and visiting scholar in the International Monetary Fund’s Research Department where she led a recently completed project surveying and assessing gender budgeting ​​efforts around the world. She has an extensive publication record in public finance, gender and economics, and macroeconomics.

The seminar will be chaired by Torunn L. Tryggestad, Director of the PRIO Centre on Gender, ​Peace and Secur​ity.

​A light lunch will be ​​​served​​​.

​​Contact: Julie Marie Hansen, julhan@pri​

Thursday, January 14, 2016

We are excited to announce that Luz Méndez's book, Clamor for Justice: Sexual Violence, Armed Conflict and Violent Land Dispossession, is now available in English! This important book explores two major episodes of sexual violence against Guatemalan women from the Q’eqchí people: the first during Guatemala's civil war and the second during the current stage of the extraction-based model of neoliberal globalization. The Consortium is honored to have played a role in making this important book available in English.

In the book's Foreword, Consortium Director Carol Cohn writes: “In addition to its valuable contributions to how we think about ending impunity, Clamor for Justice also pushes us to think about conflict related sexual violence with greater subtlety and complexity. It does so by showing how critically important it is to understand the historical, social, and political economic contexts within which organized sexual violence takes place.”

Luz Méndez is a gender expert and peace negotiator; she was the only female member of the Unidad Revolucionaria Nacional Guatemalteca delegation, contributing to unprecedented commitments for gender equality in the accords. She has authored several books and articles on gender based violence, women's access to justice and peace building in Guatemala. She is an Affiliated Researcher of the Consortium.  

The original Spanish language version of the book is available at: Mujeres indígenas: clamor por la justicia. Violencia sexual, conflicto armado y despojo violento de tierras (2014). 

Church Center of the United Nations, 10th Floor, East 44th St, New York, NY
Friday, October 30, 2015

Join us at the Peace Forum October 28-30, 2015! This series of events, organized by WILPF, the Global Network of Women Peacebuilders and their many partners, will commemorate the 15th anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325. 

Consortium Director Carol Cohn will lead a workshop on Beyond 1325: A Feminist Roadmap for Sustainable Peace on Friday, October 30, 3:00-4:30pm, at the Church Center for the United Nations, East 44th Street, New York, NYThis workshop will provide a space to radically rethink, broaden and deepen the current Women, Peace and Security (WPS) Agenda. We will ask: If we aim to be truly transformative in creating a more just, gender-equitable and sustainable peace, what is the WPS agenda missing, and how can we bring it in?   

Key questions we will examine in the workshop include: 

  • Why are areas typically outside the WPS Agenda – such as the rebuilding of infrastructure, or public finance, or extractive industries and land grabbing, or dealing with international financial institutions – so crucial for us to address?
  • What are some expectable post-war issues and dynamics that impede the realization of gender equality, even when it is written into constitutional provisions?
  • How might analysis of the root causes of conflict and inequality transform the agenda for peace negotiations?

Registration is highly encouraged, RSVP here: Peace Forum Day 2 Workshops. Hope to see you there!


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