WIIS Upcoming/Recent Events and News

Check out Women In International Security's 2017 Year in Review!



December 2017

Women In International Security (WIIS) will co-host the Gender Dimensions of International Peace and Security: Keys to Prosperity and Peace conference in cooperation with the UN Women’s Office, General Women’s Union and TRENDS Research and Advisory.



Gender is linked to prosperity and peace. Evidence shows women’s empowering, women’s agency and women’s leadership contributes to more successful and longer lasting peace. Gender sensitive approaches help to facilitate economic recovery, make peace operations more effective, and improve the quality of humanitarian assistance. Gender programs also have the ability to help combat violent extremism. As NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said 18 November 2017 “Empowering women is not just the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing to do.” In 2000, the United Nations Security Council passed resolution 1325 (UNSCR 1325). It was a foundational, landmark resolution recognizing the inextricable links between gender equality and international peace and security. UNSCR 1325 brought issues related to women and armed conflict directly onto the political agenda of the UN Security Council – the body responsible for the maintenance of international peace and security. The four pillars of UNSCR 1325 are: participation, protection, prevention and relief, and recovery. Since the adoption of UNSCR 1325 (2000), the framework for the protection and participation of women at all decision-making levels of conflict and post-conflict efforts has expanded. Indeed, the Council adopted 7 more resolutions. These resolutions, inter alia, affirm the need for women’s inclusion in post-conflict decision-making, counter-terrorism/extremism efforts, participation in peacebuilding activities, the prevention of sexual violence, protection and participation as well as women’s political and economic empowerment. At the national level, 69 states have adopted National Action Plans and many international organizations have adopted organization-wide action plans, including the African Union, the OSCE, NATO and the Arab League.


Despite the widespread national and international support for the WPS agenda, there is a significant gap between political rhetoric and tangible political and financial resources to support the WPS agenda. Bridging declared intent of policymakers and the reality of action in the many parts of the world where UNSCR 1325 is most needed remains a core challenge. The UNSC, multilateral organizations and states must continue their commitment to the WPS agenda, renew and develop national action plans, provide political endorsement and quicken progress so greater achievements can be made on this important agenda. The 



Organizing the Gender Dimensions of International Peace and Prosperity: Keys to Prosperity and Peace conference in cooperation with Women in International Security (WIIS) and the UN Women’s Office, General Women’s Union and TRENDS Research and Advisory seek to achieve several goals:

  • Raising awareness of the link between gender and peace and security in both policy and in practice;
  • Providing a better understanding of the gender dimensions of peace and security to a broad audience;
  • Showcasing the UAE’s good practice to the Women Peace and Security (WPS) agenda; and
  • Serving as a platform to launch a series of future activities aimed at advancing the women, peace and security agenda.



This conference also features a training day on December, 19 2017.  This training event will target a range of participants from the military, security, and civilian services, who are involved in peace and security matters, and it will cover the foundations of understanding gender as a social construct, as well as the power dynamics that influence and impact the gender dimensions of policy and practice.  The Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda will be examined looking at its history, content, importance for international security, how its objectives are embedded into policy, planning and operations, as well as how we can measure success in this crucial area of importance.



This conference is hosted by the General Women’s Union and TRENDS Research & Advisory in partnership with Women In International Security (WIIS) and the UN Women’s Office.


The General Women’s Union was established under the leadership of Her Highness Sheikha Fatima Bint Mubarak on 27 August 1975 under Federal Law No. (6) 1974. It is the national mechanism for the advancement, empowerment and leadership of women in the UAE and is directed it to serve women in various local, regional and international forums.



trends_logoTRENDS Research & Advisory is an independent and progressive think tank, based in Abu Dhabi – UAE, building a global network of research associates. TRENDS aims to help improve policies and decision-making processes through rigorous research and analysis .

TRENDS Research & Advisory was named as one of the Top Ten Best New Think Tanks in the World, by the 2016 Global Go To Think Tank Index Report by the Lauder Center, University of Pennsylvania.



UN-Women-logo-2-300x139UN Women is the UN organization dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs worldwide.

UN Women supports UN Member States as they set global standards for achieving gender equality, and works with governments and civil society to design laws, policies, programmes and services needed to ensure that the standards are effectively implemented and truly benefit women and girls worldwide. It works globally to make the vision of the Sustainable Development Goals a reality for women and girls and stands behind women’s equal participation in all aspects of life.

For more information on the conference, please visit the page here.


November 2017

November 8-9: As a partner of the Warsaw Security Forum, WIIS will host a panel discussion on Women in Security: Gender, Violent Extremism, and Terrorism on November 8-9th, 2017. Terrorism and violent extremism are evolving challenges that threaten global stability and security. This panel will explore the push and pull factors of radicalization and recruitment of men and women, highlighting how violent extremist organizations are successfully leveraging gender norms to aid recruitment efforts.

WSFThe annual Warsaw Security Forum (WSF) is one of the leading projects in the field of international security. It is organized in partnership with Polish and foreign partners and institutions. The Forum brings together policymakers from European Union and NATO countries to exchange experiences and discuss solutions to complex regional security challenges. WSF will be preceded by the New Security Leaders (NSL) program, a leadership development program for mid-career, high potential leaders from foreign policy, defense and security fields. Over the course of four days, NSL candidates will work with mentors – world leaders, global thinkers and experts – to discuss pressing global security challenges. WIIS Deputy Director Brooke Stedman will provide training on Gender, Peace, and Security as part of the NSL program.


CPFThe Warsaw Security Forum is organized and sponsored by the Casimir Pulaski Foundation, an independent, non-partisan think-tank specializing in foreign policy and international security. The Pulaski Foundation provides analyses that describe and explain international developments, identify trends in international environment, and contain possible recommendations and solutions for government decision makers and private sector managers to implement.



June 2017

June 21-22: Borderless Cyber is a two-day conference in NYC for cyber security stakeholders in financial services, retail, healthcare, manufacturing, utilities, international business, government, and other industries. With a focus on changing the economics of computer network defense, the program will explore ways to reduce costs for defenders and increase costs for attackers. C-level executives and directors of threat intelligence, incident response, risk, and audit will come away from Borderless Cyber with actionable insights on how to better evaluate and defend their cyber practices. Learn more about this event and register here.


March 2017

March 6: Join the Center for a New American Security and the U.S. Civil Society Working Group on Women, Peace and Security for a discussion on the challenges and opportunities for the U.S. Women, Peace, and Security Agenda and UN Peacekeeping Operations. Sarah Williamson, Executive Director and Founder of Protect the People, will present key findings from a new U.S. CSWG policy brief, The U.S. WPS Agenda and UN Peacekeeping Operations, followed by a discussion moderated by Sarah Holewinski, Senior Fellow at the Center for a New American Security and advisor to the Transregional Threats Coordination Cell for the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The convening will include diverse representation from the peacekeeping community, including military and civilian representation from the Department of Defense, the State Department, the UN, and civil society organizations. RSVP to Moira Fagan at mfagan@cnas.org. The event will be at Center for a New American Security: 1152 15th St NW, Suite 950.

March 20-21: The Carnegie International Nuclear Policy Conference brings together over 800 international experts in the nuclear nonproliferation field. The conference takes place on the eve of the fiftieth anniversary of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. Conference Panels will focus on debates surrounding the treaty's core articles, as well as on questions of how to manage its nonmembers and sole former member. At 7:30 am EST on March 21st, WIIS is co-hosting a side event called "Women of Mass Destruction." Read more about the event and hear from four women who are experts in the Nuclear Arms Control arena here. 


February 2017

WIIS is launching a new initiative, the WPS + GPS Initiative. The WPS + GPS Initiative is designed to bridge existing divides between the traditional security community and the WPS community.  The Initiative seeks to reframe and broaden the WPS agenda to include a Gender, Peace, and Security agenda in order to advance knowledge and build and support a community of international security experts that is more diverse and knowledgeable about the gender dimensions of complex international security challenges. The Initiative will include a research and book project as well as a Next Generation Symposium bringing together an international cohort of next generation leaders in peace and security. Learn more here: http://wiisglobal.org/programs/wps-gps-initiative/


January 2017

January 11: WIIS Global is co-sponsoring an event on "The Northern Triangle of Central America: Violence, Security, and Migration" with the Wilson Center's Latin American Program and Global Women's Leadership Initiative, and U.S. Civil Society Working Group on Women, Peace & Security.

The latest apprehension numbers from U.S. Customs and Border Protection suggest that Central American migrants, especially women with children and unaccompanied minors, continue to arrive at the U.S. border at an elevated rate. Violence directed at women and their families is believed to be a major driver of this migration and raises questions about how to reduce the violence and diminish the need for women and children to undertake the perilous journey north in search of safety. Learn more about this event and RSVP here.



September 2016

WIIS has published the first edition of our Combat Integration Handbook: A Leader's Guide to Success!


The Combat Integration Handbook is a reference guide for combat arms leaders at the battalion level and below. It was developed to help leaders successfully integrate their units. This guide comes at an essential time as combat arms units await the assignment of the first combat arms women who are currently making their way through their training pipelines.

The 4 primary authors have more than 70 years, combined, of military service. Together they combed through thousands of pages of research, conducted interviews and hosted a working group discussion with combat arms leaders to put together this first-of-its-kind Handbook. The Handbook exclusively addresses common challenges with gender integration in combat arms units and gives leaders and Soldiers best practices for successfully navigating the change process. Learn more about the Combat Integration Handbook here.


August 2016

WIIS is excited to announce that we have published our first policy brief! The first Policy Brief draws on the first roundtable discussion, held on March 21, 2016.

This roundtable featured four noted experts: Ms. Sanam Anderlini, Co-founder and Executive Director of the International Civil Society Action Network (ICAN); Dr. Kathleen Kuehnast, Senior Gender Advisor at the United States Institute of Peace (USIP); Dr. Paul Pillar, former official of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and now a non-resident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution; and Dr. Lorenzo Vidino, Director of the Program on Extremism at George Washington University’s Center for Cyber and Homeland Security. For more on this event, see wiisglobal.org/events.

Women, Gender and Terrorism: The Missing Links by Chantal de Jonge Oudraat and Michael E. Brown (August 2016)



Expert Roundtable Discussions 

June 20, 2016
The third roundtable in our series on women, terrorism, and violent extremism focused on past, current, and future counterterrorism (CT) and countering violent extremism (CVE) programming, the role of gender in CT/CVE programming, and how our knowledge has evolved over time. Experts also discussed which initiatives have been successful and why, with the goal of informing future programming.

May 19, 2016
The second roundtable in our series on women, terrorism, and violent extremism explored the differences in radicalization and recruitment across cultures, terrorist organizations, and gender and how the Women, Peace, and Security agenda changes our understanding of the push and pull mechanisms. Panelists considered what a gender sensitive research agenda on extremist radicalization and recruitment would look like and how the counterterrorism and WPS communities can learn from each other.

March 21, 2016
This round table kicked off a series of exploratory discussions on women, terrorism, and violent extremism. Panelists discussed the effectiveness of our policy responses and how gender dynamics affect the root causes of violent extremism and terrorism, as well as how gender should be incorporated into current policy initiatives. Click here to learn more about this event.

Please see our multimedia page at http://wiisglobal.org/multimedia/ for videos and recordings of these events.


February 2016

It's Time for 9: The Nomination and Election Process of the Next UN Secretary-General 

February 11: As the time to elect a new UN Secretary-General nears, there is a growing demand from UN member states not only to make the process more transparent and inclusive but also to have a woman leader assume the role. Indeed, in 70 years the UN has never openly considered a woman as its Secretary-General. The President of the 70th UN's General Assembly, Mr. Mogens Lykketoft in outlining the new process for the election said that for the first time in UN history the entire UN membership will be included in the selection process. He also said that there is a “strong wish” from many UN member states to have a woman Secretary-General and reminded UN member states that the commonly used excuse that there “are no qualified female candidates” is unacceptable.

RSVP here to join WIIS, GWU's Global Gender Program, and the “Campaign to Elect a Woman UN Secretary-General” of City College's Colin Powell School in a round table discussion with:

  • Gillian Sorensen, former UN Assistant Secretary-General
  • Jean Krasno, Campaign Chair, “Campaign to Elect a Woman UN Secretary-General"
  • Shazia Rafi, former Secretary-General of Parliamentarians for Global Action (PGA)

Speaker Bios: The Nomination and Election Process of the Next UN Secretary

Feb. 11 Woman Secretary General Event

October 2015

3-piece publication on the status of UNSCR 1325

  1. Gender Mainstreaming: Indicators for the Implementation of UNSCR 1325 and Its Related Resolutions by Chantal de Jonge Oudraat, Sonja Stojanović‐Gajić, Carolyn Washington, and Brooke Stedman.
  2. Women in Combat - Adaptation and Change in the US Military by Ellen Haring
  3. The Piece Missing from Peace by Jeannette Gaudry Haynie

The 1325 Scorecard Report

October 29: WIIS launched the 1325 Scorecard at NATO HQ. The 1325 Scorecard is a tool to evaluate how well the principles of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 (UNSCR 1325) are implemented within the armed forces of NATO Allies. It also provides NATO and NATO member and partner states indications of how to improve implementation. Finally, it helps to further standardization and interoperability amongst NATO Allies. Read UNSCR 1325 Scorecard report.


September 2015

Salary Negotiation Seminar

September 30 & November 10: As a part of the Mentor and Professional Development (MPD) program, members of Women in International Security (WIIS) and the Women’s Mentoring Network (WMN) at Brookings Institution were invited to participate in a seminar on salary negotiation. Participants learned techniques and tips for salary negotiation, and had the opportunity to practice newly learned negotiation skills during two exercises. This salary negotiation seminar was taught by Dr. Margaret New, founder and CEO of The Middleburg Group, LLC, a career coaching consultancy. Dr. New has 30 years of experience coaching women with job search skills and salary negotiation.

Please note, this seminar was limited to 25 participants to ensure one-on-one coaching. This seminar was be offered September 30 and November 10, with the possibility of subsequent sessions, depending on levels of interest. At this time only members of WIIS and WMN were invited to participate. To RSVP, please visit here.


August 2015

Missing Peace Practitioners’ Workshop on Accountability for Sexual Violence Speke Munyonyo Resort, Kampala, Uganda
August 26-28: This meeting was a historic convening of experts from healthcare, law enforcement, legal aid, prosecution, and the judiciary from Kenya, Liberia, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Uganda, and eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. Together, there was an exchange of new research and ideas regarding local capacity to investigate and prosecute sexual violence, including those incidents that may amount to an international crime under the Rome Statute. Hosting organizations included the Human Rights Center from the University of California Berkeley, Women in International Security, the U.S. Institute of Peace, and the Peace Research Institute Oslo.

For more information and to access the full report, please visit here.


June 2015

Abstract: Clan Governance and State Stability: The Relationship Between Female Subordination and Political Order

June 25: Women in International Security and the U.S. Institute of Peace hosted an off-the-record discussion with Dr. Valerie Hudson on the status of women and peace and security. In Sex and World Peace, Valerie and her colleagues broke new ground and argued that the security of women is a vital factor in the security of the state and its incidence of conflict and war. In her new research endeavor, Valerie and her team dive deeper and examine the relationships between the influence of clans (and women's subordination) and state behavior, i.e. security.


April 2015

Toward Disarmament Securely: Clarifying the Nuclear Security and Disarmament Link
April 23: The Foreign Policy Institute (FPI) for the released the report  of FPI Fellow and former WIIS Board Member, Deepti Choubey's, “Toward Disarmament Securely: Clarifying the Nuclear Security and Disarmament Link.” Choubey suggests recommendations relevant to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty regime and for the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit. Additional information can be found here.

Leadership Summit for Women in National Security Careers 2015.
April 10: This important day of skill-building, action planning and self-discovery is a unique opportunity for women in our national security and intelligence community to come together to learn, grow and explore.

Women and Jihad
April 6: The United States and other international actors are increasingly attentive to the different roles women play in violent extremism. This roundtable discussion examined why women join violent extremists groups and the roles they play in ISIS and affiliated jihadists groups in Iraq, Syria and Yemen. In addition, the roles of women and women's organizations in preventative efforts will also be examined.


February 2015

Women, Powerful Agents for Peace and Security
February 16-17: WIIS President, Dr. Chantal de Jonge Oudraat, spoke at the international conference, "Women, Powerful Agents for Peace and Security," in Amsterdam. The conference was organized by the Dutch Foreign Ministry and brought together civil society partners from post-conflict countries, policy makers, UN representatives, and experts in the field.



WIIS in the News

5/25/2017:  Women In International Security Fellow Ellen Haring speaks with Stars and Stripes about the difficulties that military women face in finding a mentor: “But then women look around, and there are no senior women (in their lanes), and men are afraid to mentor them for fear they’ll be accused of having an inappropriate relationship.” Read the full story here.

3/24/2016: Women In International Security Fellow Ellen Haring blogs for Task & Purpose on the boot camp gender segregation in the U.S. Marine Corps and its threat to full integration of women into combat roles. Read the full blog here.

3/18/16: Women In International Security Deputy Director Brooke Stedman speaks to CNN about President Obama's appointment of the first female combatant commander in the US military. Read the full story here.

2/19/16: Women In International Security Deputy Director Brooke Stedman speaks with CNN on the issue of requiring women to register for the Selective Service as candidates address the issue ahead of the South Carolina Republican primary contest. Read the story and watch the video here.


12/03/2015: Women In International Security congratulates the U.S. Department of Defense and Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter on their decision to fully open all military occupations and positions to U.S. servicewomen. Today’s decision finally enables the full integration of women into all combat positions. There will be no exceptions! This “means that, as long as they qualify and meet the standards, women will now be able to contribute to our mission in ways they could not before,” according to Secretary Carter. Read the full press release here.


10/14/2015: Read Ellen Haring and Megan MacKenzie's research on the recent Marine Corps study on the integration of women into combat occupations: Exclusive access to Marine Corps study shows it misses the mark.

For news articles on the Marine Corps study, see the following:

9/30/2015: Quotes from WIIS's September 29, 2015 press breakfast on women in combat roles were used in an article published on MilitaryTimes.com, "Decision looms on women in combat."

9/30/2015: Senior Fellow Ellen Haring was interviewed on WPR about the role of women in combat. Listen to the interview here.

9/24/2015: WIIS was mentioned in a recent article by Micah Zenko and Amelia Mae Wolf concerning the lack of women working in foreign policy. Read the full article, "Leaning From Behind," published in Foreign Policy.

9/8/2015: WIIS's research on women and combat integration in the US military was featured in a recent TIME article, See Women's Progress in the U.S. Military.

8/18/2015: Senior Fellow Ellen Haring spoke on CNN's "The World Right Now" with Hala Gorani about whether new occupations and units will remain closed to women, despite women completing the U.S. Army Ranger School. "First Women Soldiers Complete U.S. Ranger Training"

8/18/2015: Senior Fellow Ellen Haring spoke on Huffington Post Live to provide insight on what the graduation of women from U.S. Army Ranger School will mean for the opening of combat positions to women and the importance of utilizing existing data on women in the military. "Women To Become Army Rangers, Barred From Combat"

8/18/2015: Senior Fellow Ellen Haring spoke to PBS and provided insight as to what women graduating from Ranger School means for the future of women in the security field. "Will the first women to finish Ranger School change what’s off limits in the military?"

8/12/2015: Meghan Mackenzie discusses the myths and realities of women in combat following WIIS's July CST Working Group workshop.



{"error":"Website uid not found"}