An Analysis of Chapter Eight of the Global Study, "Preventing Conflict: The Origins Of The Women, Peace and Security Agenda"

By Marta Bautista

UNMISS Civil Affairs Division Conducts Mediation Workshop. (Photo: UN Photo/JC McIlwaine)

Chapter eight of the Global Study on the implementation of UNSCR 1325 addresses the need to prevent war and to use force only as a last resort. Women around the world have continued to demand the end of war and global disarmament, pointing out that the international community has for too long used militarism at the expense of integrating prevention measures and addressing root causes. In fact, one of the main demands of UNSCR 1325 and the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda is the use prevention as a key measure for the Security Council.

This chapter commends the WPS agenda for valuing both operational (short-term) and structural (long-term) approaches to  prevention. The study also points out that conflict prevention and early warning measures include overcoming the exclusion of women and girls; eliminating gender-based violence; achieving gender equality and eliminating discrimination; addressing arms proliferation; and working towards climate change prevention.

Facts and Figures:

  • Militarism and cultures of militarised masculinities create and sustain political decision-making where resorting to the use of force becomes a normalized mode for dispute resolution (Global Study 2015, 207).
  • Studies in Kosovo and Sierra Leone found that women had valuable information about the accumulation of weapons and violent attacks being planned, but had no means of reporting or sharing this information (Global Study 2015, 198).

  • In furthering the use of information and communication technologies in conflict prevention, there are key gender-specific access and control concerns that often correspond with pre-existing barriers to women’s access to power and resources (Global Study 2015, 202).

  • Despite their direct experience coping with climate change and resource scarcity, women are severely under-represented in decision-making on natural resource management in fragile and conflict-affected settings (GLobal Study 2015, 212).

Key recommendations:

  • Member States should adopt gender-responsive budgeting practices, including through consultation with civil society, as a strategy to address militarised state budgets and their destabilising impact on international peace and security and women’s rights (Global Study on 1325, 214).

  • Women’s organizations, that have key insights into changing power relations, should be actively engaged in roles that allow them to maximize the impact of this valuable knowledge within existing mechanisms (Global Study 2015, p. 198).

  • Member States, the UN, regional and international organisations should include women’s participation, gender-responsive indicators and sexual and gender-based violence related indicators in all early-warning processes and conflict prevention (Global Study on 1325, 214).

  • Member States should revise their National Action Plans (NAPs) to, as relevant, address the role of climate-related resource scarcity and natural disaster response in exacerbating conflict, and provide inclusive solutions to resource-related insecurity (Global Study 2015, 215).

For more information, see UN Women’s Global Study Factsheets or the entire Global Study on Women, Peace and Security.