8 March 2019

International Working Women’s Day Celebrations-Ankara TED University

Women’s Initiative in Foreign Policy and TED University Centre for Gender Studies celebrated March 8, International Working Women’s Day with a panel held at TED University in Ankara. Our 8 March Ankara panel was dedicated to the memory of dear Ceren Damar Şenel, a research assistant at Çankaya University, Faculty of Law. Ceren’s father was among us and he gave the opening speech.
Our panel began with Assoc. Dr. Bezen Balamir Coşkun’s presentation of her study titled Women’s Movement in Turkey and continued with Dr. Burcu Özdemir’s presentation, Localization of Gender Equality: Examples of Trabzon and Hatay.

14 March 2019

Women in Diplomacy Panel: March 8, International Working Women’s Day Celebration-Istanbul

Women in Foreign Policy Initiative celebrated International Working Women’s Day
with female diplomats in Istanbul. “Women in Diplomacy” panel session
was organized in cooperation with the Economic Development Foundation (IKV) Istanbul EU Information Centre on 14 March 2019.
The opening speeches were given by IKV President Ayhan Zeytinoğlu and founder of Women in Foreign Policy Initiative Assoc. Dr. Zeynep Alemdar from Okan University.
Assoc. Dr. Zeynep Alemdar expressed that they decided to set up this initiative five years ago with the intention of bringing together remarkable women as the participants of the panel, shaking the world order full of polarization and hate speech, demonstrating how women can contribute to diplomacy and peace-making processes and introducing role models that remain in the background to younger generations. She pointed out that today only 5.8% of the heads of governments and only 23% of parliamentarians are women. Additionally, she noted that the countries where there are more women diplomats and parliamentarians are less prone to conflict and wars and that therefore more women representatives are needed for peace. Assoc. Dr. Zeynep Alemdar ended her speech by emphasizing that world peace could not be achieved without the greater representation of women. The panel session, moderated by IKV Secretary General Assoc. Dr. Çiğdem Nas, continued with the speeches of Ambassador Naciye Gökçen Kaya, Adriana Ciamba -Consul General of Romania in Istanbul; -Therese Hyden -Consul General of Sweden in Istanbul; Lorraine Fussey- Deputy Consul General of the UK in Istanbul; Iris Bjorg Kristjansdottir- Gender and Humanitarian Specialist at UN Women and Prof. Dr. Şule Kut.
More details about the panel can be found here: https://www.ikv.org.tr/ikv.asp?ust_id=3352&id=3414

18 March 2019

WPF Report on Turkey-EU Relations

The two important developments in Turkey-EU Relations took place in March: The European Parliament’s Decision of the Suspension of the Accession Negotiations with Turkey and the EU-Turkey Association Council Meeting Report.
The EP adopted the resolution calling for the suspension of Turkey’s EU accession process and following the vote, the EU-Turkey Association Council met for the first time in 4 years and 2 days.
Assoc. Dr. Özlem Kaygusuz and Assoc. Dr. Başak Alpan discussed the background of the developments and evaluated whether the EU-Turkey Relations could actually revitalize.

3 April 2019

Dr. Christina Bache, one of the founders of Women in Foreign Policy Initiative, presented her report on women’s participation in peace and transition processes to the European Parliament

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the FEMM Committee, aims to provide insight on the meaningful inclusion of women – where women have decision-making authority – in peace and transition processes. Inclusive peace frameworks not only better reflect the diversity of society, but they also increase the durability and the quality of peace. Yet, awarding decision-making authority to those waging the war and not to those waging the peace remains a reoccurring theme in most armed conflict situations. The study presents available data on fragility and armed conflict and takes stock of the global arms trade. It examines progress on the implementation of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 and subsequent resolutions. It assesses global commitments, European Union application of the Women, Peace and Security agenda, National Action Plans and global peace and security indicators. The study explores women’s participation across the peace-making landscape, including peace and transition processes. Moreover, an evaluation of the factors that enhance and constrain women’s meaningful participation in peace-making is put forward. The study highlights the impact of war on women and children and draws attention to the engagement of women across the peace-making landscape in two case studies, Rwanda and Syria. Lastly, the study provides recommendations to achieve sustainable peace and transform global power dynamics that currently favour traditional security perspectives.
Dr. Christina Bache’s report on the participation of women in peace and transition processes can be found here: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/thinktank/en/document.html?reference=IPOL_STU(2019)608869

16 May 2019

Protecting our Rights: Women and Politics

Zeynep Alemdar, one of the founders of WFP, came together with Istanbul Komşukapısı Maçka Solidarity Association and OPUS NOESIS team and gave a speech titled “Protecting our Rights: Women and Politics”.
There has been no improvement in Turkey within regards to any of the gender inequality indexes for the last ten years. Among the countries with similar income and developments levels, Turkey ranks significantly low in terms of women’s participation in politics. In a country which has a deep-rooted civil society tradition and which prioritize women’s place in society with formal agreements, how do women politicians, comprehend the extent of women’s exclusion from politics and decision-making mechanisms? How can local and international networks interact in order to find new methods to increase women’s representations and what are the opportunities for civil society?

17 May 2019

Equality or (In)Equality: Academy and Media from a Gender Perspective Panel- Ankara Middle East Technical University

WFP Initiative’s second panel session of 2019 was held on 17 May 2019 at Middle East Technical University, Ankara.
The panel session titled ‘Equality or (In)Equality: Academy and Media from a Gender Perspective’ was comprised of the presentations of papers which discuss fundamental problems that we as WFP strive to bring to the agenda of media, politics and Academy.
Additionally, the panel was especially important for us as it was dedicated to the memory of our dear Ceren Damar Şenel a research assistant at Çankaya University, Faculty of Law, who we lost in January 2019 as a result of a vicious attack. Ceren’s father was among us and gave the opening speech of our panel.
During the first session of the panel discussion, moderated by Assoc. Dr. Özlem Kaygusuz from Ankara University, Dr. Çiğdem Üstün from Association for Development Migration and Social Policies (DEMİS), gave her presentation titled ‘Male and Female Participants represented in the Prime Time TV debate programmes.’ Dr. Çiğdem Üstün shared the data from the field study she carried out in autumn 2018 and revealed the dimensions of women’s problematic representation in the mainstream media.
Secondly, Prof. Dr. Zuhal Yeşilyurt Gündüz from TED University and Prof. Dr. Birgül Demirtaş from TOBB-ETÜ presented their study; ‘Being a female Academic in the field of IR in Turkey: Glass ceilings and Ivory Basements and shared the data gathered from their field research conducted in the IR departments of Turkish Universities. They further highlighted the difficulties female academics encounter in terms of rise in the academia, possibility to execute research independently and promotion to the executive levels.
Finally, Hacettepe University faculty members Dr. Ayşe Ömür Atmaca and Assoc. Dr. Pınar Gözen Ercan, theoretically discussed how feminism offers new ways to understand contemporary issues of international security within the scope of their studies titled ‘Rethinking International Security: Feminist Critiques in International Relations.’

27-29 June 2019

German Marshall Fund Brussels Forum

Rana Birden Çorbacıoğlu, one of the founders of WFP, attended to Brussels Forum organized by the German Marshall Fund, one of the world’s leading think tanks.