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POLITICAL PARTICIPATION OF WOMEN

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					 POLITICAL PARTICIPATION OF WOMEN AND WOMEN’S LEADERSHIP
                     IN THE EECIS REGION




1.) Expected use and intended outcome
Evidence-based research will inform programming changes that increase
results on gender mainstreaming and women’s empowerment in the ECIS
region – both on country and regional level. It will also mobilize local partners
to collect information and support building of a broad Gender Community of
Practice consisting of policy makers, academics, NGO activists and UNDP
GFPs involved in the process of data gathering and analyzing. The publication
will contribute to creating enabling environment at the national and sub-
regional levels needed to move empowerment of women in the area of
political participation and leadership from abstract theoretical concepts to
concrete, result-oriented practices.

2.) Rationale
Transition and development processes in the region occur without the full
participation of women, weakening women’s position in political and socio-
economic life. These trends need to be reversed, in order to ensure that the
benefits of transition equally reach both sexes. Major challenges identified in
the area of political participation and leadership include: (a) lack of data and in
depth studies on the ongoing processes of (mostly decreasing) participation of
women in political life; (b) lack of understanding of the processes leading to
women’s low political participation; and (c) under developed state capacity,
including lack of implementation of gender equality legislation and cooperation
with the non-state actors to produce greater gender equality and ensure
participation of women in public life, including in decision making processes,
in line with international commitments and national legislation.

The publication on political participation of women in the EECIS will address
those challenges; identify and analyze the root causes for women’s low
political participation (such as electoral systems, stereotypes, historical legacy
etc.) and propose concrete actions to address them.

3.) Target audience and preliminary dissemination plan
Target audience
     UNDP staff in the EECIS region tasked with programming both at
       country office and regional level.
     Policy makers/state actors in the EECIS region
     Non-state actors including CSOs and academia tasked with gender
       related issues

4.) Expected content and plan for developing content (eg planned
methodology, research etc)

The publication will include three groups of topics/ issues/ articles:


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   1. Overview of the regional situation:
       Comparison of women’s political participation at various levels: local
        – national – supranational (e.g. EU);
       Comparison between different sub-regions: EU members (Central
        Europe – Baltic States) – accession countries – CIS – Central Asia;
       Quotas/ affirmative action/ ensured representation: ongoing
        debates, examples, evaluation of experiences;
       Impact of gender equality legislation on women’s political
        participation/ representation in the region;
       Women’s role in economic governance: social dialogue.
   2. Specific issues, such as:
       Gender based violence and participation of women in public life;
       Political participation of young women;
       Governance, leadership and media;
       Roma women’s leadership;
       Women’s economic leadership: entrepreneurship, participation in
        business and employers’ organizations;
       Women’s role in religious organizations.

Special attention will be paid to the following countries portraying specific
issues representative for various sub-regions, for example:
        Turkey (organizing for women’s political participation);
        BiH (women’s participation in the peace-building process);
        Poland (EU accession and political participation of women);
        Georgia (Civil Society Organizations and women’s leadership);
        Kirgizstan (role of the state and political participation of women).

Responsible actors/partners:
   BRC Gender Unit, supported by external consultants – i.e. an overall
     content editor tasked with the overall coordination of the report as well
     as providing substantial feedback on contributions from the various
     chapter authors,
   A Regional Advisory Board will be established to provide guidance and
     expertise on the development of the report. Members will include
     representatives from BRC, the BDP Gender Team and UNIFEM.
   The report will be developed in close cooperation with COs that
     currently implement projects on political participation and women’s
     leadership and that are identified as suitable target countries for the
     country related sections of the report (e.g. Turkey, Western Balkans,
     Georgia, etc.)
   Consultations at national and sub-regional level will strongly involve
     women NGO networks in the EECIS, selected Gender Institutes at
     Universities and other experts from academia.

Estimated product length: app. between 250 and 300 pages

Envisaged timelines for submission of the complete draft:
May 2009:          Final draft submitted


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