The WPS agenda has potential as a framework to advance gender equality within multiple types of post-conflict reform processes and form part of wider peacebuilding efforts. Harnessing this potential requires a broader interpretation of WPS and a recognition of its relevance across a broad range of thematic areas.
International actors should adopt a more comprehensive and coordinated approach to WPS, connecting their engagement on different reform processes and sectors to advance gender-equality goals. This includes breaking down thematic and sectoral silos in international programming in order to integrate strategic synergies and mutually reinforcing components of different reform processes.
This requires international actors to think and work in ways that are politically smart, to understand how context-specific bargaining processes shape opportunities to promote women’s participation and influence in reform processes, and to tailor their support to respond to such shifting opportunities.
It is particularly important that international development actors include providing long-term, strategic and flexible support to women’s movements; ensure that WPS National Action Plans (NAPs) are broad, overarching and flexible; use political leverage and networking to build support for gender equality goals; invest in their own analytical and technical capacities to undertake this work; overcome internal institutional siloes within international organisations to coordinate support across different reform processes and gender-equality objectives.
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