A broad spectrum of researchers, ranging from non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and the media to policy makers and students worldwide, will be able to exchange data and increase collaboration on gender, peace and security issues thanks to the first-ever such dedicated online directory, launched by the United Nations this week.
“In combating violence against women both in the context of war and peace, information sharing must be the first – although definitely not the last – step towards action,” said Carmen Moreno, Director of the UN International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW) which is launching the tool, focused on institutions that are actively engaged in gender, peace and security issues.
“In the overall efforts to make women free from all fears, INSTRAW expects this directory to help get quick access to accurate and relevant data on gender, peace and security,” she added.
Through a fast, user-friendly search engine, up-to-date information on over 100 research institutions from around the globe, encompassing universities, colleges, independent research organizations, NGOs and UN bodies, can be found online.
Various issues pertaining to gender, peace and security are included in the directory such as human rights, refugees and internally displaced persons, peacekeeping, violence against women, disarmament, and women’s political participation. Stepping beyond the narrow definition of armed conflict, INSTRAW understands that these issues apply to developed and developing nations as well as countries at peace, at war and in transition.
“Anyone who is looking for experts can find information on gender peace and security staff on this directory,” INSTRAW Gender, Peace and Security Specialist Kristin Valasek said.
“Also students who are interested in pursuing studies in this field and want to find information on where they can take classes and where they can find degrees on these issues [will find it useful],” she added.
This worldwide e-directory is the first of its kind as none of the existing databases containing information on gender, peace and security includes specific information on research institutions. Searches can be made by region of work, area of specialization and type of organization in 18 different languages.