The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, NOREF Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution and the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO) cordially invite you to a panel discussion on the barriers and opportunities for women's participation and influence in mediation and peace processes, and the role that women mediators' networks can play in redressing the gender gap in this field.

A video recording of the event is available here.

It has been more than 17 years since the UN Security Council adopted the first resolution on Women, Peace and Security, in which the international community recognized that women's participation and influence in peace and reconciliation matters are decisive, both in terms of respecting women's rights, and in order to ensure operational effectiveness. However, despite broad political consensus, women continue to be sidelined in peace processes whether as negotiating or mediating parties.

Recently, a number of regional networks of women mediators have emerged to address these issues. These networks join in a global movement towards enhancing women's participation and influence in peace processes. In this context, the Nordic Women Mediators network has initiated a process with the goal of establishing a global network of women mediators. This initiative aims to bridge the persistent gender gap by bringing together existing regional networks in order to improve coordination and enable mutual support.

We have invited key actors in the field to start a conversation about how these regional networks can best join forces, and what the possibilities for a global initiative could be. Central questions to be addressed include; what are the barriers that women face when it comes to taking part in mediation and peace and reconciliation processes? How do the different regional networks work to overcome these? How may a global network of women mediators contribute to overcoming current challenges?

Global women mediators

        ![Global women mediators](

Photo: Brian Cliff Olguin


09.00 – 09.30: Welcome by Henrik Urdal, Director, PRIO.

Opening by Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs Ine Eriksen Søreide and UN Under-Secretary-General Ana María Menéndez.

09. 30 – 09. 50: Presentations by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Leymah Gbowee and former UN Under-Secretary-General Noeleen Heyzer, both representing the UN Secretary-General's High Level Advisory Board on Mediation.

09.50 – 11.15: Panel discussion with representatives from the established regional networks and the UN:

  • Catherine Samba-Panza (FemWise – Africa)
  • Francesca Tardioli (Mediterranean Women Mediators Network)
  • Lena Sundh (Nordic Women Mediators network)
  • Under-Secretary-General, Ana Maria Menendez (UN).

The discussion will be moderated by Christian Ruge (NOREF).

Comments from Sanam Anderlini, Executive Director, International Civil Society Action Network (ICAN) and Thania Paffenholz, Director, Inclusive Peace & Transition Initiative, Graduate Institute Geneva.

Please note that this event will be held in English.