Equal Participation of Women and Men in Decision-Making Processes, with Particular Emphasis on Political Participation and Leadership
Report of the Expert Group Meeting held in Addis-Ababa, Ethiopia on 24 – 27 October 2005
1. In accordance with its multi-year programme of work for 2001-2006, the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) will consider “Equal participation of women and men in decision-making processes at all levels” as one of two thematic issues during its fiftieth session in 2006. In order to contribute to a further understanding of this issue and to assist the Commission in its deliberations, the United Nations Division for the Advancement of Women (DAW) in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, in collaboration with the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), organized an Expert Group Meeting (EGM) on “Equal participation of women and men in decision-making processes, with particular emphasis on political participation and leadership”. The EGM was hosted by the Economic Commission for Africa in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 24 to 27 October 2005.
2. The findings and recommendations of the Expert Group Meeting will be presented at the panel discussion on equal participation of women and men in decision-making processes during the fiftieth session of the Commission on the Status of Women.
3. The expert group meeting analyzed the current situation of women in decision-making processes, with particular emphasis on women’s political participation and leadership at the international, national, regional and local levels. It discussed the conditions that facilitate women’s representation in decision-making processes within the context of current socio-economic and political transformations, and examined the linkages between women’s presence in decision-making and their impact on the mainstreaming of a gender perspective into policies and programmes. The expert group meeting adopted policy recommendations to advance women’s participation and leadership through, inter alia, capacity-building, coalition-building and gender-sensitive institutional policies, programmes and mechanisms, based on the identification of the most promising practices and lessons learned to date. The report that follows is the outcome of deliberations of the independent experts.