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Elevating Women’s Leadership for Effective Transboundary Water Cooperation

June 20, 2023 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Research shows that including women in peace processes makes agreements more durable and leads to lower instances of conflict. Despite this, less than 10 percent of negotiators in peace processes are women — and in transboundary water management, women are specifically underrepresented, especially at higher levels of decision-making. However, entities such as the Women in Water Diplomacy Network are looking to change this by supporting a community of practice focused on empowerment, peer-to-peer learning and collective advocacy for formal and informal women water diplomats, with a focus in conflict-sensitive regions such as the Nile Basin, Central Asia and Afghanistan, among others.

Join USIP for a conversation on women’s leadership in water diplomacy. In honor of the second International Day of Women in Diplomacy, women water diplomats from around the world will discuss water conflict sensitivities, share lessons learned and enumerate paths forward for peace.


Kayly Oberwelcoming remarks
Senior Program Officer, Climate, Environment and Conflict, U.S. Institute of Peace

Henk W.J. Ovinkkeynote address
Special Envoy for International Water Affairs, Kingdom of the Netherlands

Elizabeth A. Kochmoderator
Senior Manager for International Programs, Environmental Law Institute; Process Support Lead, Women in Water Diplomacy Network

Foman Forough
Former Director General of the Kabul River Basin, Afghanistan

Zodwa Dlamini
Former Chief Delegate and Permanent Representative for South Africa, Lesotho Highlands Water Commission

Tanya Trujillo
Assistant Secretary for Water and Science, U.S. Department of Interior

Swathi Veeravalli
Director of Climate Security and Adaptation, National Security Council

Aubrey Paris
Senior Advisor, Gender, Climate Change and Innovation, Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, Department of State


United States Institute of Peace
2301 Constitution Ave
Washington, D.C., DC 20037 United States
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