Nov 2015 –
Inspired by a similar initiative in southern Africa, the Nordic governments endorsed the creation of the Nordic Women Mediators (NWM) network at the Nordic African Foreign Ministers' meeting in April 2015. The NWM was officially launched in Oslo on 27 November 2015, followed by an international launch at the United Nations in New York in March 2016. The PRIO GPS Centre is an operational partner of the NWM in Norway, together with the Norwegian Centre for Conflict Resolution (NOREF).
The UN Security Council has on numerous occasions expressed concern at the persistent obstacles to women's full involvement in the prevention and resolution of conflicts. Special attention has been drawn to the constant under-representation of women in peace processes, transitional processes and post-political settlement decision-making, institutions and reconstruction. A UN study (pdf) has found that only two per cent of chief mediators, nine per cent of negotiators, and four per cent of signatories were women.
The Nordic Women Mediators (NWM) is a network of women from the five Nordic countries who have professional expertise relevant to conflict mediation, peacebuilding and negotiations. NWM network members share a commitment to sustaining peace through the inclusive and meaningful participation of women in all phases of peace processes. NWM is an instrument for the involvement of Nordic women in advocacy and operational engagement in support for peace.
The membership of the network comprises Nordic women with diverse professional experiences, ranging from foreign affairs and international law to multilateral and regional organizations, such as the UN, the EU and the OSCE, and civil society.
NWM network members have expertise on a variety of issues relevant to all phases of peace processes, including mediation, ceasefire arrangements, constitutional reform, civil-military relations, international humanitarian law, human rights, communications and inclusive strategies. Promoting women in negotiations, mediation and all phases of peace-making is at the heart of the work of the NWM.
NWM is a collaborative forum, building on national women mediators' networks in all five Nordic countries – Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. The network was launched in Oslo in November 2015.
The Nordic Women Mediators (NWM) mission is to enable Nordic women mediators and peacebuilders to advance the inclusion and meaningful participation of women in all phases of peace processes, in order to contribute to achieving and sustaining peace.
To achieve the mission of the network, the NWM will work according to the following objectives:
1. To strengthen women's participation in peace processes at all levels by:
2. To strengthen Nordic women actively involved in international peace-making efforts by:
Follow the network in social media on #WomenMediators
The annual meeting of the Nordic Women Mediators (NWM) takes place in Reykjavik from 17 – 19 November 2021. Members from all five Nordic networks come together for a three-day meeting to discuss approaches to including and strengthening women in mediation and peacebuilding efforts. The discussions draw on lessons from the recent events in Afghanistan and from new working methods applied during the Covid-19 pandemic.
What is the role of regional women mediator networks in realizing the Women, Peace and Security agenda? What are the key trends and issues that will define the future of this agenda?
On 3-4 June 2020, the Nordic Women Mediators (NWM) Network gathered for a virtual meeting on ‘Beyond the pandemic – a critical time for the meaningful inclusion of women in mediation and peace processes’. The meeting focused on how to move forward with the implementation of the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda in light of the Covid-19 crisis, with the aim to identify transformative approaches to peace mediation and peacebuilding, which put women’s leadership at the center.
On Friday 24 April, Nordic Women Mediators-Norway (NWM-Norway) had its first ever virtual members' meeting. The topic of the meeting was the COVID-19 pandemic and how it affects peace processes and women's inclusion in peace processes worldwide. 25 members attended the meeting, including several members living outside of Norway. The meeting was organised by the network's Steering Group and the PRIO GPS Centre director Torunn L. Tryggestad chaired the meeting.
In February, Major General Kristin Lund, Practitioner in Residence at PRIO, attended seminars in both Mali and the Netherlands. In 2014 Lund became the first woman Force Commander in UN history as the Force Commander of the United Nations Forces in Cyprus (UNFICYP). In 2017 Lund was appointed Head of Mission of the UN Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) in Jerusalem.
The Global Alliance of Regional Women Mediator Networks was launched on 26 September. The launch was a side event at the High-Level Opening Week of the United Nations General Assembly 74 (UNGA 74). Over fifty women from four regional women mediator networks, as well as government and UN officials attended the launch. The PRIO GPS Centre and NOREF, as operational partners of NWM-Norway, played a central role in the organisation of the launch as well as a network day for the members of the four regional networks of women mediators. PRIO also had a key role in contributing to a promo film made and a webpage set up for the Global Alliance.
This morning, the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs Ine Eriksen Søreide met with representatives from the Nordic Women Mediators - Norway (NWM-Norway) network. At the meeting Eriksen Søreide received the official outcome document from the 2018 NWM Annual Meeting in Copenhagen, a letter addressed to all the five Nordic Ministers for Foreign Affairs.
On 9-10 May 2019 more than 50 members of the Nordic Women Mediators (NWM) network convened in Oslo for a two-day annual meeting. In addition to the NWM members, seven prominent women from Afghanistan, Libya and Yemen were invited to provide insights into the status of women's engagement and influence in the peace processes in their respective countries.
Members from all five national branches of the Nordic Women Mediators (NWM) network will convene in Copenhagen, Denmark for a two-day annual meeting of the regional network on 21-22 November.
On 23-25 October, there will be a gathering of regional women mediator networks in New York. The meeting is organized as a collaborative effort between by Femwise-Africa, the Mediterranean Women Mediators Network (MWMN), the Nordic Women Mediators (NWM), and the Women Meditators across the Commonwealth (WMC). It is hosted by the International Peace Institute (IPI).
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