The Way Forward on Gender, Peace, and Security

Learning the Lessons of Iraq and Afghanistan

Authored by: Heather Hurlburt, Elizabeth Weingarten, Elena Souris

Categories: The Field of Women, Peace and Security
Sub-Categories: Democratization and Political Participation, Economic Participation
Country: Iraq, Afghanistan
Region: Middle East and North Africa
Year: 2018
Citation: Hurlburt, Heather, Elizabeth Weingarten, and Elena Souris. "The Way Forward on Gender, Peace, and Security." New America. September 27, 2018.

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Executive Summary

In December 2017 and February 2018, participants representing several dozen U.S. government, international, and non-governmental agencies held two roundtable discussions. These conversations reviewed ten years of applying gender analysis and women, peace, and security framework to the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. The group drew dozens of lessons for policymakers seeking to build peace, counter violent extremism, and promote post-conflict reconstruction. With decades of experience in the military, humanitarian assistance, diplomacy, peace-building and advocacy fields—serving both Republican and Democratic presidents—participants offered a wide range of takeaways.

This playbook offers six immediate, practical lessons as the U.S. government implements new strategies for Iraq and Afghanistan and considers how best to implement the 2017 Women, Peace and Security Act. The United States Institute of Peace and New America will publish more detailed policy recommendations in the months ahead, and we also suggest further reading in the form of resources prepared by organizations and experts who participated in the conversations.