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it is our hope that the series will continue to provide critical reflections on women, peace and security in diverse contexts, and with potentially transformative effects.
The LSE Centre for Women, Peace and Security Working Paper Series is an outlet for articles and position papers. It showcases work in progress by academics and researchers from any discipline and sector in the field of women, peace and security research and practice. The editors welcome new submissions.
Please note: We are NOT accepting submissions at this time.
‘I asked God’: Reparations for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) in Timor-Leste’s Transitional Justice ProcessNoemí Pérez Vásquez (29/2022)This paper examines the role of transitional justice in the provision of reparations and guarantees of non-repetition for sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) violations in the aftermath of conflict. Based on the case of Timor-Leste, the paper analyses the exclusion of SRHR from reparation initiatives implemented in a post-conflict state.Image credit, UN Women (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Solidarity and Justice for War Crimes Against Women: The ‘Comfort Women’ CaseRachele Marconi (28/2022)
This paper explores the role of solidarity in achieving post-conflict justice in cases of international war crimes against women. The quest for justice for the victims of some of the most serious violations of international humanitarian law (IHL), and the recent struggles to obtain reparations commensurate to the crimes committed, demonstrate the rising importance of solidarity among international civil society actors and its potential to shape international law and relations.
Rejecting Notions of “Honour” to Mitigate Stigma: Prosecutions for Sexual Violence Before the Bangladeshi International Criminal TribunalsPriya Gopalan (27/2021)
This paper explores the problematic consequences of viewing conflict-related sexual violence (CRSV) through the lens of “honour”, and the related notions of social morality such as chastity, dignity, modesty, or purity. It argues that situating sexual violence in the realm of social morality fuels the stigmatisation of survivors of this crime. Thus, the invisibility of sexual violence complicates efforts to document, investigate and prosecute this crime.
Protecting Women's Rights in Conflict: New developments and next steps in the synergy between CEDAW and the WPS AgendaCatherine O'Rourke and Aisling Swaine (26/2020)
This working paper outlines the cooperation between CEDAW and the WPS agenda, reflects on their efficacy, and offers suggestions for their further strengthening. It highlights new developments in three essential directions: from the Secretary-General’s Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict and the Informal Experts Group on WPS; from CEDAW state parties, through their National Action Plans on WPS; and from civil society.
Female Ex-combatants, peace, and reintegration: Reflections on the Disarmament, Demobilisation, and Reintegration Programmes in Liberia and Nepal Michanne Steenbergen (25/2020)
This paper reflects on the gendered narratives introduced by UN-led DDR officials in Liberia and Nepal. It highlights that female ex-combatant were often understood in their relation to men, i.e. as wives, mothers, and daughters. The paper calls for UN-led DDR to work together with female ex-combatants on their reintegration and to challenge oversimplified narratives in documentation and among local and foreign DDR officials.
Building Brazil's National Action Plan: lessons learned and opportunities Renata Avelar Giannini and Pérola Abreu Pereira (24/2020)
This paper examines the process that led to the drafting and launch of Brazil’s NAP and how international and domestic factors influenced the Plan’s content, shaping future outcomes. Brazil’s National Action Plan on Women, Peace, and Security (NAP) was launched on 8 March 2017 – International Women’s Day – amid a major political crisis that affected the content of the Plan and engagement of key institutions such as the Ministry of Justice and the Secretariat for Women’s Policies.
Global Health and Gender Equality: Advancing Women, Peace and Security by Preventing Neglected Tropical DiseasesChelsea B. Payne (23/2020)
This article discusses the WPS agenda in the context of global health and humanitarian crisis, reviews predominant threats posed by NTDs, and presents key recommendations to expand women’s participation in the WPS agenda by addressing NTDs through sustainable global health.
The Nature of Women, Peace and Security: where is the environment in WPS and where is WPS in environmental peacebulding? Keina Yoshida (22/2019)
This paper challenges the absence of the environment and climate justice from the WPS framework and the parallel marginalisation of gender perspectives within the literature and practice of environmental peacebuilding. It shows that the WPS agenda has a significant role to play in providing an alternative and sustainable vision of peace and security in the face of the current extractivist and neo-liberal practice, which fails to consider the impact of these economies on women.
Gender Issues in the Context of a Humanitarian CrisisChoman Hardi (21/2019)
The paper focuses on the funding priorities of regional and international agencies in the context of the Islamic State (IS) crisis and the consequences for women’s rights organisations. The main concern of this paper is the marginalisation of women’s interests in the context of a humanitarian crisis in the Kurdistan region of Iraq.
Performing Anti-Trafficking: Human Rights, the Security Council and the Disconnect with the WPS AgendaGema Fernández Rodríguez de Liévana (20/2019)
The paper provides an analysis of the Security Council approach to combating human trafficking, in particular the process of adoption of Resolution 2331 (2016) and the role of the Spanish Government in this process. It also explores the connections (and disconnections) between the Spanish leadership on WPS, the anti-trafficking UNSCR and the way the state is fulfilling its due diligence obligations towards victims of trafficking internally.
The Known Knowns and Known Unknowns In Data on Women, Peace and SecurityRobert Ulrich Nagel (19/2019)
The paper provides an overview of the known knowns and known unknowns of the quantitative data landscape on gendered violence, women in armed groups, and the WPS agenda. It highlights both advances and areas for further improvement of data linked to UN Security Council Resolution 1325, such as gender mainstreaming, National Action Plans, and increasing women’s participation in distinct aspects of peace processes, in particular peacekeeping, negotiations, and peace agreements.
Gender and Transformative Justice in Sri LankaBhavani Fonseka and Ellen Schulz (18/2018)
The paper focuses on Sri Lanka’s reconciliation and reform processes and transformation for women and the task of bringing genuine transformation to the women affected by the country near three-decade war and recurring conflicts. The paper urges decision-makers to ensure full inclusion of women and include gendered experiences in planned reform processes, aiming at genuine transformation of societal circumstances so that conflict affected women can achieve empowerment, dignity, and equality.
Engaging with the Gender, Peace and Security Agenda in Research and Activism in LebanonElizabeth Laruni, Charbel Maydaa and Henri Myrttinen (17/2018)
This paper reflects on the current state of gender, peace, and security work in Lebanon in particular, providing a view from a critical academic and civil society perspective, with a strong focus on sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) issues. It draws on ongoing discussions and collaboration among a network of academics, practitioners and activists working on gender and sexuality.
Engendering Extremism: Women Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism in PakistanMossarat Qadeem (16/2018)
This paper shows how women at various levels of Pakistani society can advance the cause for a more robust strategy on preventing and countering violent extremism (P/CVE). It shows that despite not having a National Action Plan (NAP), some NGOs in Pakistan are implementing the Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) agenda.
Encountering Metis in the Security CouncilSam Cook (15/2018)
The paper explores how feminists encounter and work within the practices and procedures of the Security Council, its rules, and procedures. This paper engages in the project of ‘theorizing practice’ by confronting, and attempting to move through, the challenges of telling the practice of these everyday policymaking. The author argues that feminist articulations of Security Council practice often rely on the invocation of relationships between differently situated feminists.
Abortion and Reproductive Rights in the Women, Peace and Security AgendaClaire Pierson and Jennifer Thomson (14/2018)
The paper explores the potential of the WPS agenda as a potential means to further abortion access and rights. It highlights how the WPS is rapidly becoming a key international mechanism to further women’s rights in conflict and post-conflict environments and that, in the current global context, its relative lack of reference to abortion access is worrying.
Resilience Policy and Internally Displaced Women in Iraq: an unintentionally flawed approachZeynep N Kaya (13/2018)
This policy brief offers an assessment of the concept of resilience as an international policy frame. While appreciating the potential of resilience as influential and potentially radical in many areas, the author argues that it offers a simplistic understanding of the causes of gendered vulnerabilities in conflict-related displacement, at least, in the context of Iraq. Existing resilience policies in response to displacement in Iraq, despite their effort in including women and a gender perspective in their programmes, remain limited in their potential to address key issues that displaced women face.
International Human Rights, Criminal Law and the Women, Peace and Security AgendaChristine Chinkin (12/2018)
This paper reflects upon the interplay between international human rights law and criminal law – both national and international – through the international legal regimes that have evolved for combating gender-based violence against women, in peacetime and in conflict, and human trafficking, especially of women and girls. Accordingly, the paper considers the convergence of legal regimes and the ensuing erosion of clear delineation between them.
Engaging men and boys in the Women, Peace and Security agenda: beyond the 'good men' industryDavid Duriesmith (11/2017)
This paper begins by explaining what “engagement work” is and how it connects to the WPS agenda. It then charts the origins of “engagement work” in pro-feminist men’s organising before investigating the tensions present in this work. Finally, it considers how we might learn from the tensions present in engagement work in order to guide future work on and with men within WPS.
Afghanistan's National Action Plan: 'A wish list of many dreams'Wazhma Frogh (10/2017)
This working paper analyses the development of the Afghanistan National Action Plan and explores the challenges around its implementation in the context of a continued military conflict in Afghanistan.
WPS, CRSV and sexual exploitation and abuse in peace operations: Making sense of the missing linksJasmine-Kim Westendorf (9/2017)
This paper explores how the divorcing of SEA policy from WPS and CRSV has undermined the implementation of all three policies. It offers a perspective to understand how situating SEA policy within these broader thematic frameworks might assist in strengthening the prevention and response of sexual exploitation and abuse by interveners in peace operations.
Why does armed conflict recur, and what has gender go to do with it?Judy El-Bushra (8/2017)
This paper describes some of the ways in which the international community has sought to conceptualise persistent conflict and asks whether incorporating a gender dimension into this analysis can enhance understanding and expand options for effective intervention.
Making violent women visible in the WPS agendaAlexis Leanna Henshaw (7/2017)
This paper discusses how women combatants’ lack of representation in the Women, Peace and Security agenda can feed into gendered myths about armed conflict and limit the effectiveness of peace processes.
The WPS agenda and the 'Refugee Crisis': Missing connections and missed opportunities in EuropeAiko Holvikivi and Audrey Reeves (6/2017)
This working paper focuses on how forcibly displaced persons skirt the margins of the WPS agenda. The paper interrogates the effects of this marginalisation and suggest that including refugee questions in WPS policymaking and scholarship carries the potential to improve security provision for those who have fled to Europe, as well as to revive the transformative potential of the WPS agenda.
Transitional justice and WPS: A critical reading of the EU Framework Maria Martin de Almagro (5/2017)
This paper reflects upon EU policy on transitional justice and its tendency to reproduce a conservative understanding of transitional justice that is equivalent to the existing EU conception of the Women, Peace, and Security agenda.
1325 – is that a taxi number? Implementation of the National Action Plan on 1325 and 1820 in Nepal Punam Yadav (4/2017)
The paper shed light on the development and the implementation of the NAP in Nepal. It examines the achievements since the NAP and highlights some of the key challenges for the effective implementation of the NAP in Nepal.
"You want freedom? This is your freedom": Rape as a tactic of the Assad regime Marie Forestier (3/2017)
This paper addresses sexual violence within the Syrian conflict. It discusses sexual violence committed by pro-government forces in Syria and calls for accountability, women’s participation in a future peace process and the implement of the WPS agenda.
Sexual orientation and gender identity as part of the WPS project Jamie J Hagen (2/2016)
This policy brief reviews the troubled use of “gender” as a place holder for “women”, and discusses the distinct vulnerabilities faced by LGBTQ individuals in conflict. It also explores ways to include sexual orientation and gender identity in WPS work, offering some policy recommendations.
Women, Peace and Security: A critical analysis of the Security Council's visionDianne Otto (1/2016)
This policy brief offers a critical analysis on the WPS agenda and argues that long-standing feminist conceptions of positive peace have become captive to the militarized security frame of the Council’s operation.
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