Women and the Democratization Process in Africa

Authored by: United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization

Categories: Statebuilding
Sub-Categories: Democratization and Political Participation, Economic Participation, Political Transitions
Region: Sub-Saharan Africa
Year: 1994
Citation: Women and the Democratization Process in Africa. Paris: United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, 1994.

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The Regional Meeting of Experts on Women and the Democratization Process in Africa was organised by UNESCO in cooperation with the Namibia National Preparatory Committee for the Fourth World Conference on Women as part of UNESCO activities in the social sciences and their applications for the advancement of women and the promotion of their participation in economic, social, political and scientific life. The meeting discussed the following topics: 1. Opportunities opened up for women's increased participation in politick life and decision-making roles within their countries in the post-independence period and constraints faced during the last two decades 2. What roles are women playing in the current wave of democratisation in Africa: for example their roles in social movements, NGO's, political parties, as part of the new generation of leaders in local and national governments. 3. Challenges for including more women in policy-making forums and for placing gender issues onto mainstream policy agendas as part of a strategy for humanizing society and consolidating democracy 4. Widening the definitions and practices of political life and democracy to take into account the need for a more equitable sharing of responsibilities and power between women and men 5. Social, cultural and economic factors limiting women's participation as informed and active citizens in nation-building. 6. Proposals on strategies and measures to promote more balanced gender relations and increase women's involvement in political life and the democratisation process at grass roots, national, regional and international levels.