Foreign policy and diplomacy, and issues of peace and security in general, have traditionally been understood as male domains, and are even nowadays often conceptualised in masculinised terms.

Yet, research has shown that taking into account women’s views and experiences in conflict resolution, that is, engaging them “beyond the protocol”, often leads to less militarized and more sustainable and peaceful outcomes. With our project, we want to reflect on and further develop visions of a “feminist foreign policy” for Germany and Ukraine.Yet, research has shown that taking into account women’s views and experiences in conflict resolution, that is, engaging them “beyond the protocol”, often leads to less militarized and more sustainable and peaceful outcomes.

Lack of women in the domestic and international realm, and in the practice of international peace and security, is striking. Sixteen years after the UN Security Council landmark resolution 1325 pushed for greater gender equality in the area of peace and security and the acceptance of women as equal conflict management actors, implementation proceeds slowly. The presence of women in formal peace negotiations remains especially lamentable: UN Women revealed that within 31 major peace processes between 1992 and 2011, only 4 percent of signatories, 2.4 percent of chief mediators, 3.7 percent of witnesses and 9 percent of negotiators were women. These issues are particularly relevant for the conflict resolution Ukraine.

Project aim

The main goal of the project is to create a common German-Ukrainian understanding of the role of women in foreign policy.

The project will empower the participants, i.e. to help them raising awareness for the importance of women in politics of peace and security as a whole. In the long run, the project would contribute to making them “gender-aware” domestic and foreign policy decision-makers and-shapers.

The project output should be two public exhibitions (in Berlin and Kyiv) of the photo series of Ukrainian and German women in the international politics which stories inspire the project participants. With this project, we want to develop visions of a “feminine component of the foreign policy” for Germany and Ukraine.

Project activities:

October 9 – 13, 2016
First encounter and project work with partner groups in Kyiv

The German participants will visit Kyiv to meet Ukrainian counterparts and jointly participate in a number of workshops:

  • Women in Politics and Administration – Before, During, and After the EuroMaidan;
  • Women in the Foreign Service and Think Tanks, Gender Components of the Association Agreement and International Cooperation;
  • Women and War in Ukraine, Special Challenges and Roles, Women in Negotiation Processes.

The participants will jointly work on preparation of the exhibition with photos of inspiring German and Ukrainian women in international politics, their stories and interesting facts on the project topic.

 

November 20 – 24, 2016
Second encounter and project work with partner groups in Berlin

The Ukrainian participants will visit Berlin to meet German counterparts and jointly participate in a number of workshops:

  • Women in German and European Foreign Policy and Diplomacy - in Think Tanks, the Bundestag, the Foreign Office;
  • Women in International Security – German Women as Conflict Mediators, Women in the Bundeswehr.

The participants will jointly participate in exhibition launch that will be opened with a public and interactive discussion on the topic. It will enable participants to increase awareness of the problem in the society.

December 2016
Presentation in Kyiv

The project’s results will be presented for a second time at the small exhibition in Kyiv featuring photographic portraits of the women met and interviewed. The exhibition launch will be open with a public and interactive discussion on the topic.

Project partner
Polis180 is German grassroots think tank created by young policy enthusiasts, dealing with European and foreign affairs. It aims to overcome party divides and instead focuses on the substance of the questions that bother young generation most. Polis180 strives for meaningful dialogue and develops innovative political concepts.

Project support
The project is funded by the German Foreign Office and the Robert Bosch Foundation, under the umbrella program “Meet Up! – German-Ukrainian youth encounters” of the Foundation “Remembrance, Responsibility and Future” (Stiftung “Erinnerung, Verantwortung, Zukunft”), and is generously supported by the Alfred-Herrhausen-Gesellschaft and the German-Ukrainian Forum.

The project is implemented under the support of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.

Project's Publications:
Women in Politics: "There are more common than different in Ukraine and Germany" (in Ukrainian), Deutsche Welle, December 6, 2016

Project's Video:
Beyond the Protocol: Women and International Politics in Germany and Ukraine