Unpacking the Making of National Action Plans: Governmentality, Security, and Race in the Dutch Implementation of UNSCR 1325

Authored by: Hanna L. Muehlenhoff

Categories: Human Rights, National Action Plans, The Field of Women, Peace and Security
Sub-Categories: Democratization and Political Participation, National Action Plans, UN Resolutions
Region: No Region
Year: 2022
Citation: Muehlenhoff, Hanna L. "Unpacking the making of National Action Plans: governmentality, security, and race in the Dutch implementation of UNSCR 1325." International Feminist Journal of Politics (2022): 1-23.

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In 2000, the United Nations Security Council decided on Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security (WPS). More than 80 countries around the world have adopted National Action Plans (NAPs) to implement the resolution. The existing literature on NAPs in the Global North is critical of how states use the WPS agenda for traditional security goals and hardly include civil society in their policies. The Dutch NAP has not been studied yet, although it is built on a strong relationship between the state and civil society organizations, the latter being partners and signatories of the NAP. Based on interviews with signatories of the third Dutch NAP, this contribution unpacks and analyzes NAP making as governmentality. I argue that the plan’s governing structure has led to more comprehensive understandings of security and gender in the NAP, yet it is still made for specific racialized “Others” and prioritizes national security interests. The NAP is primarily a funding instrument and is exclusively available to signatory organizations. This has created competition for funding and influence between different civil society groups, rewarding large development and peace organizations, and thus white Global North knowledge, marginalizing women’s rights and diaspora organizations, and excluding local actors.