Inclusive Security Launches Resolution to Act

   •    March 22, 2013

The Resolution to Act Launch Event was held in Washington, DC, on March 13, 2012. For the full set of photos from the event, click here.

Last week, Amb. Swanee Hunt and the Institute for Inclusive Security introduced Resolution to Act, our strategy for translating the powerful vision of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 into meaningful results. This new initiative seeks to bridge the gap between what policies “say” and what they “do.”

In 2000, resolution 1325 provided a new framework for acknowledging and advancing the vital role of women in building peace. Some 39 countries have developed National Action Plans (NAPs) to carry out 1325’s principles. However, NAPs are only part of the story, since policies without practice are mere words on paper.

Partners, policymakers, and experts from around the world gathered at the Army and Navy Club in Washington, DC, to celebrate the launch.

During the luncheon, participants heard from key leaders, including:

  • Julia Duncan-Cassell, Liberian Minister of Gender and Development
  • Wazhma Frogh, Afghan civil society leader
  • Brian Nichols, US Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State
  • Gry Larsen, Norwegian Deputy Foreign Minister
  • Jane Holl Lute, Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security
  • Jordan Ryan, UNDP Assistant Administrator

Amb. Hunt explained that NAPs must be well-designed, monitored, and constantly improved to effect change, and that meaningful collaboration is vital to successful execution. She introduced Gry Larsen, who recognized the women leaders as the “true heroes,” and shared her pride at being a founding partner of Resolution to Act. Wazhma Frogh emphasized how important it is for implementers to realize the impact of inclusive security, stating, “I have lived the war, I have lived the peace: women make the difference.”

Julia Duncan-Cassell told her powerful story of how women brought peace to Liberia through collective action. Brian Nichols shared that the biggest change he’s seen in Washington since the US launched its NAP in 2011 is that inclusion is becoming ingrained.  He now rarely sees a document that doesn’t already address the need for inclusion. Jordan Ryan reminded the group that despite progress made in regards to women’s inclusion, there is an important distinction to be made between integrating these principles into documents and integrating them into the work on the ground.  He noted that in conflict states, a small percentage of assistance is dedicated to projects that address inclusion of women.

Concluding lunch, Jane Holl Lute urged participants to act, stressing, “we shouldn’t treat war like weather; it doesn’t just happen.”

High-level Discussion Groups

The launch was a celebration and an opportunity to collaborate. The Institute has long served as a convening force; this event was an extension of our cooperative approach.

Participants spent the afternoon in discussion groups focusing on challenges that Resolution to Act will address, such as linking inclusive security, data, and results; convincing the private sector to invest in NAPs; and utilizing technology to spur learning across borders. The groups provided a forum in which participants could pool their expertise to delve into strategic questions.

The discussions were rich, and the recommendations produced are powerful. The Institute is eager to share these in the coming months, so be on the lookout for updates as we advance this important initiative.

Now What?

The goal of Resolution to Act is to create, foster, and measure the impact of NAPs and related strategies. Impact requires a clear vision of success and how to get there, as well as stakeholders working together to create outcomes that resonate across institutions and conflict zones.

We’re currently implementing Resolution to Act in Afghanistan, and we’ll head to Liberia in May. Several other important country engagements are planned for later this year and in 2014. We’re also developing new tools to help NAP implementers, including a new monitoring and evaluation toolkit to measure the progress of implementation. This work would not be possible without support from our partners, which include:

  • Club de Madrid
  • Cordaid
  • Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace, and Security
  • Government of Finland
  • Norwegian Foreign Ministry
  • UNDP
  • UN Women
  • US Department of State

We’re finalizing arrangements and hope to soon announce partnerships with the University of Nairobi and the Global Network of Women Peacebuilders / International Civil Society Action Network.

As we build and develop Resolution to Act, we’re excited to engage with new countries, new partners, and new experts – if you are resolved to act, please contact us!

Related:

About Resolution to Act
National Action Plan Kick-Starts Banner Year for Women, Peace, and Security
Women, Peace, and Security Act Introduced: Ensuring Women a Seat at the Table
What’s Missing from the US National Action Plan on Women, Peace, and Security?

Angelic Young is senior coordinator of Resolution to Act at The Institute for Inclusive Security.

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