A Women’s Guide to Constitution Making

Nanako Tamaru & Marie O’Reilly   •   March 2018


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For those looking to get a clearer understanding of the constitutional process, actors, and tactics for influence, we have also developed a Women’s Guide to Constitution Making. This guide is designed for women looking to influence constitutional processes in their own countries, whether by earning a seat in constitution-drafting bodies, advocating from civil society, advising as constitutional experts, or supporting the process in other ways.

It introduces need-to-know concepts related to constitutions and constitution-making processes, such as the elements that make up the text, the types of constitution-making bodies, legal standards for women’s participation, and sample constitution-drafting timelines. It also lays out a five-step strategic framework for designing and implementing advocacy strategies that can be tailored to any constitutional agenda. From mapping key actors to mobilizing for change, this framework includes 17 tools to support an advocacy campaign.

This guidance draws on the rich and varied experiences of female drafters, activists, and advocates in Colombia, East Timor, Kenya, Nepal, Philippines, Rwanda, South Africa, and Tunisia. The advocacy frameworks are also informed by hundreds of Inclusive Security trainings in peace and transition processes in some of the most difficult, conflict-affected contexts, from Afghanistan to South Sudan.

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