Identifying Barriers to Women's Participation

Objectives: Previous workpackages will have identified the sites of women's under-representation, and the absence of women's voices and interests from governance. This workpackage seeks to understand why this has occurred.

Critical Questions:

  • What are the reasons for women's absence from governance in significant numbers?
  • What are the institutional barriers to women's presence, and the inclusion of women's interests in governance?
  • If women are present in substantial numbers, does their presence make a difference to the agenda? Do they work together to bring about greater gender equality?
  • If so, how can this difference be recognised?
  • Are women's interests, needs and perspectives included in the decision making process?
  • If so, how? Do women in decision-making positions have links with women's NGOs? Are women's NGOs part of the negotiating process around decision-making?

Methodology: Each partner will identify a range of relevant people (including politicians, civil servants, NGOs and other civic organizations) with an insight into one or more of the above questions. Partners will conduct one-hour interviews with the identified individuals to explore the questions listed above.

Deliverables: Each partner will produce a country report, which will be published as journal articles, disseminated to relevant NGOs and government organizations, and feature in the final country report. The co-ordinator will produce a comparative report, which will be disseminated and appear as a chapter in the final book.

Expected Results: This work package will provide some novel and useful analysis into why women are under-represented (e.g., discrimination, women turn down offers of more senior positions). These results will prove the most useful in terms of the final work package, which seeks to make policy recommendations to rectify this gender imbalance.

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