Gender, governance and security
This chapter examines the interconnections between gender, governance and security. Scholars have clearly established that women’s status, including women’s participation in public life, contributes to political stability, good political and economic governance and state security. However, women are still underrepresented or even absent from the governance and decisionmaking institutions of many states. This is due to structural inequalities, gendered informal institutions and rampant violence against women in politics. This chapter argues that gender equality can be facilitated through gender quotas and other mechanisms, but numerical balances are not sufficient to bring about optimal policy outcomes. Women must have meaningful participation in government, gender perspectives have to be mainstreamed in policy processes and a gender equality agenda must be a genuine policy priority. Women’s civil society organizations and coalitions have been major drivers of progress to date. Priorities for the future include forging societal and global campaigns, building alliances among women and with men and expanding the feminist foreign policy movement.