GAPS’ policy work is integral to our advocacy.
In partnership with members and other organisations, we regularly produce policy and campaign documents that reflect on our work with the UK government and broader Women, Peace and Security policy.
These include policy briefings, reports and recommendations. These documents can be found below.
The 10 Steps: Turning Women, Peace and Security Commitments to Implementation
In 2019, the UK Government funded GAPS and its partners to undertake consultations on Women, Peace and Security to mark the 20th anniversary of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 in 2020. 245 organisations and individuals were consulted across 11 countries as part of this project. The consultation participants developed recommendations for how governments, multilateral institutions, international non-governmental organisations and civil society can meet their Women, Peace and Security commitments and, importantly, make progress for women and girls affected by conflict and gender inequality in fragile and conflict affected states.
This report brings together the findings from the consultations to provide a sound body of evidence that outlines how progress can be made and Women, Peace and Security commitments implemented. The consultation findings demonstrate that commitments on Women, Peace and Security are vast and comprehensive and. However, in practice this has not translated into the inclusion of gender perspectives and women and girls’ rights in policy and programming. By implementing ten recommendations – The 10 Steps – multilateral institutions, governments, INGOs and civil society can make transformational progress that aims to create a more peaceful world in which women, girls, men and boys’ rights are upheld.
Women, Peace and Security and Displacement in the Middle East
This joint policy report of the LSE Middle East Centre and GAPS was launched in Parliament in July 2019 at an event of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Women, Peace and Security. The report is the result of extensive discussions at a workshop organised by the LSE Middle East Centre in Jordan in September 2018 with national and international experts. The workshop focused on the gendered impacts of displacement and how the Women, Peace and Security agenda can be used to address the issue of conflict-related displacement better. The discussions highlighted that the Middle East’s existing National Action Plans to implement the Women, Peace and Security agenda remain limited in addressing conflict-related displacement and its long-term gendered implications.
This report offers insights and provides recommendations to support responses to displacement to be gender-sensitive, and to integrate the displacement and Women, Peace and Security agendas through addressing the differential rights, needs and experiences of displaced women, girls, and men and boys.
Beyond Consultations: A tool to promote more meaningful engagement of women in fragile and conflict-affected states
The Beyond Consultations tool is designed to support actors to move towards more meaningful engagement with women in fragile and conflict-affected states, in response to feedback that many consultation exercises tend to be extractive, tokenistic and disempowering. The tool was developed and verified using a rigorous process involving women and women’s organisations in fragile and conflict-affected states, national governments, international non-governmental organisations and multilateral agencies.
The tool enables a self-assessment of current consultation practices and provides a best practice framework to ensure that women and women’s organisations are fully engaged in decision-making processes. It should be used as early as possible during the planning and design phase of engagement, and regularly revisited throughout the participation activity and its evaluation
The Beyond Consultations tool was developed in partnership with GAPS member organisations Women for Women International UK, Amnesty International UK, Saferworld and Womankind Worldwide. It can be downloaded via the Beyond Consultations website: www.beyondconsultations.org.
Assessing UK Government Action in 2018: GAPS Women, Peace and Security Shadow Report
In this shadow report, GAPS assesses the 2018 Annual Report to Parliament by the UK Government and focuses on how the UK Government has used, and could have used, the first year of implementation for this National Action Plan (NAP) to lay a strong foundation for the full five years of the NAP.
While the inward-looking Strategic Outcome 7 on UK Government capabilities is particularly welcome, there remains considerable room for progress. It is vital that the UK Government scales up its Women, Peace and Security efforts, including on: funding for Women, Peace and Security, in particular for women’s rights organisations, women human rights defenders and peacebuilders; addressing the root causes and drives of gender inequality, violence and conflict; meeting arms control commitments; domestic implementation of the Women, Peace and Security agenda; and community-based peacebuilding.
UK National Action Plan: GAPS Six Month Check-In
In January 2018 GAPS welcomed the UK Government’s latest, fourth National Action Plan (NAP) on Women, Peace and Security. Exactly six months on, GAPS is launching the GAPS NAP Six Month Check-In, our response to the 2018-2022 NAP. The response outlines GAPS’s reflections both on the NAP itself and its implementation, including the ongoing development of the UK Government’s Monitoring Evaluation and Learning (MEL) plan.
The GAPS NAP Six-Month Check-In welcomes the consultative process of the development of the NAP and the cross-government approach. It encourages: progress on the development of a robust MEL framework; a strengthened focus on the conflict prevention pillar of the Women, Peace and Security agenda; increased funding for Women, Peace and Security; and support for Women’s Rights Organisations, Women Human Rights Defenders, peacebuilders and Civil Society Organisations in Fragile and Conflict Affected States.
Prioritise Peace: Challenging approaches to Preventing & Countering Violent Extremism from a Women, Peace and Security perspective
There has been a shift in recent years where Women, Peace and Security is increasingly discussed in the context of Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (P/CVE). This new GAPS paper assesses the impact of this, and makes recommendations to avoid women and girls being used as tools in P/CVE as well as the need to prioritise peace.
The paper demonstrates that current approaches to P/CVE do not take seriously the protection of women and girls’ rights, and are inconsistent with peacebuilding processes that promote social empowerment and reform to address the root causes of all forms of violent conflict. It makes recommendations for ways to ensure the protection and promotion of the rights of women and girls, and to address underlying cause of conflict in a way that promotes gender equality.
Displacement and Women’s Economic Empowerment: Voices of Displaced Women in the KRI
Women for Women International UK, the LSE Centre for Women, Peace and Security and GAPS have released a new report: Displacement and Women’s Economic Empowerment: Voices of Displaced Women in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.
This report examines, and makes concrete recommendations for, women’s economic wellbeing and empowerment in the context of conflict-related displacement, focusing on livelihood needs and opportunities. It provides insights into how displacement has affected the position of women in the economic life of the family and community, and captures specific and contextualised aspects of women’s opportunities and barriers to empowerment from their perspective. The key contribution of this report is that it reflects the voices of displaced women in the KRI. Hear directly from women in the KRI in these videos: Alia; Shireen; Raja.
Download the full report
Download the Executive Summary
Assessing UK Government Action in 2017: GAPS Women, Peace and Security Shadow Report
In this new report GAPS assesses the 2017 Annual Report to Parliament by the UK Government, analyses progress in the UK’s Women, Peace and Security work over the past year and makes recommendations for building on this progress including for the new UK National Action Plan (NAP). In this report, GAPS looks at the UK’s work at the UN Security Council, its efforts to support women’s participation in international events, its role in the conflict in Yemen, and other key developments from this year. As the final shadow report for the 2014-2017 UK NAP on Women, Peace and Security, it also provides an overview of the UK Government’s reporting during the course of this NAP.
This report builds on and complements GAPS’ written submission Informing the new UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security, the summary report Women’s Voices in the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security, and previous shadow reports for 2015 and 2016.
Syrian Women’s voices in the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security
In November 2016 the UK Government partnered with GAPS to consult with women’s civil society organisations and women human rights defenders on the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) priorities in their contexts. GAPS members Amnesty International UK and Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom supplemented funds from the UK Government to run the Syria Response consultations in Turkey and Lebanon, alongside Women Now for Development. This report reflects analysis by women’s rights activists of the barriers and challenges around WPS, as well as recommendations that will inform the development process of the next UK National Action Plan on WPS.
Afghan Women’s voices in the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security
In November 2016 the UK Government partnered with GAPS to consult with women’s civil society organisations and women human rights defenders on the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) priorities in their contexts. This report presents a summary of the findings from the consultation in Afghanistan which took place in February 2017. The consultations were led by Women for Women International UK and Medica Afghanistan. The recommendations in this report are direct outcomes from the consultation, proposed by participants.
Women’s voices in the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security: Summary Report
In November 2016 the UK Government partnered with GAPS to consult with women’s civil society organisations and women human rights defenders on the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) priorities in their contexts. The aim is to bring these women’s voices directly to the decision-makers, to ensure that the next, fourth UK NAP on WPS (2018+) is firmly grounded in the realities that women face. The consultations were conducted in 2017, in four of the UK’s WPS focus countries/contexts: Myanmar, Somalia, Afghanistan, and in Turkey and Lebanon for the Syria Response. This summary report highlights the key findings from the consultations, setting out the many common priorities that women working for peace and security face in such challenging circumstances.
GAPS Submission: Informing the new UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security
This submission provides GAPS’ views on the current 2014-2017 NAP, and uses analysis and lessons learned to recommend strategic objectives for inclusion in the 2018+ NAP. It builds on previous GAPS documents which include analysis of and recommendations for the UK’s work on Women, Peace and Security (WPS). These findings are intended to complement the findings of our FCO-GAPS country consultations.
Experts’ Meeting: Sexual Violence in Conflict and the UK’s Women, Peace and Security Agenda – Chairs’ Summary
One year after the conclusions of the UN’s High Level Review on Women, Peace and Security, we, along with the LSE Centre for Women, Peace and Security and Women for Women International (UK) held a series of roundtables on Sexual Violence in Conflict and the UK’s Women, Peace and Security work. This Chairs’ Summary outlines the Experts’ recommendations.
Assessing UK Government Action in 2016: GAPS Women, Peace and Security Shadow Report
In this new report GAPS welcomes the 2016 annual report to Parliament by the UK Government, analyses the UK’s Women, Peace and Security work over the past year and makes recommendations for the upcoming new UK National Action Plan (NAP).
Three years too many: the impact of conflict for women and girls in South Sudan
As the civil war in South Sudan enters into its fourth year, the levels of displacement, insecurity and violence are reaching unprecedented levels. The majority of the displaced are women and girls, who continue to bear the brunt of thed armed conflict. More is needed from the international community to achieve safety, protection, empowerment and long-lasting peace for women and girls in South Sudan. In line with its commitments to WPS, we urge the UK government to immediately undertake the recommendations outlined in this paper.
Next Steps for the New, Forward Looking NAP 2018+
GAPS has developed feedback on the UK’s midline evaluation of its National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security (NAP). This will feed into the UK’s development of it’s upcoming NAP: NAP 2018+.
GAPS Report: Assessing UK Government Action on Women, Peace and Security in 2015
In this report, GAPS welcomes the 2015 report to Parliament by the UK Government, and reviews key announcements and tangible progress made in 2015. We focus on the implementation of the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security 2014-2017 and its associated Implementation Plan.
GAPS Submission to the Lords Select Committee on Sexual Violence in Conflict
World Humanitarian Summit – GAPS joint position paper with GADN and InterAction
This joint GAPS, Gender and Development Network (GADN) and InterAction position paper recognises that transformative change in the humanitarian system is impossible unless reforms account for gender equality and gender-based violence. Research and experience have demonstrated how the failure to address the gendered impacts of crises, including gender-based violence, is one the biggest weaknesses and recurrent gaps in the international and national responses to disasters. The position paper provides recommendations to work towards realising a transformative change in the way the humanitarian community prioritises, integrates and coordinates gender equality and gender-based violence in emergency response efforts.
Turning Promises Into Progress – Gender equality and rights for women and girls. Section 1, Part 2: Women, Peace and Security
Turning Promises Into Progress – Gender equality and rights for women and girls – lessons learnt and actions needed (summary briefing)
Turning Promises Into Progress – Gender equality and rights for women and girls – lessons learnt and actions needed (full report)
Northern Ireland Inquiry since the Peace Agreement – Northern Ireland Women’s European Platform Summary Report
GAPS-BAAG (British and Irish Agencies Afghanistan Group) Women’s Rights Paper for the London Development Conference
GAPS Recommendations: Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Summit
Since launching the Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative (PSVI) in May 2012, the UK Government has demonstrated significant leadership in highlighting sexual and gender-based violence in conflict and gathering support from the international community. The PSVI Summit in June 2014 provides a key opportunity to build on this momentum and situate preventing sexual violence in the broader Women, Peace and Security framework. Ahead of the PSVI Summit, GAPS member organisations have developed four overarching recommendations with specific actions and outcomes to ensure that the PSVI Summit results in tangible benefits for those living in conflict-affected countries, particularly survivors of sexual violence in conflict.
Associate Parliamentary Group Briefing on the UK government National Action Plan Development
Associate Parliamentary Group Briefing on the 2013 UK National Action Plan Report to Parliament
GAPS response to the 2011-2013 UK National Action Plan review and the development of the 2014-2017 UK National Action Plan
GAPS Recommendations for the 2014-2017 UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security
These recommendations call for the UK Government to take the opportunity of developing its 3rd National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security to consolidate its existing work and to take bold steps to ensure that programmes, funding and ways of working ensure that women are at the heart of conflict prevention, peacebuilding and recovery. There are recommendations for the implementation of the 4 pillars of UN Security Council Resolution 1325, for the domestic application of Women, Peace and Security to Northern Ireland, and strategic recommendations including on: funding; government coordination; monitoring, evaluation and learning; and civil society and in-country consultation.
Associate Parliamentary Group Submission to the International Development Select Committee on Violence Against Women and Girls
Shadow Report of the First Annual Review of the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security
The Associate Parliamentary Group on Women, Peace and Security (APG) and Gender Action for Peace and Security (GAPS) welcome the publication of the first annual review of the National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security 2010 – 2013 (NAP). The review’s publication represents a significant step forward in the accountability and reporting mechanisms attached to the NAP. For the first time, information has been openly and accurately reported to Parliament by way of a Written Ministerial Statement and senior officials have been available for more
detailed civil society and parliamentary scrutiny at a meeting hosted by the APG. This report contains recommendations for the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the Women, Peace and Security agenda by the UK Government.
Women, Peace and Security Toolkit for the UK Government Foreign and Commonwealth Office
GAPS and Gender and Development Network Recommendations for the Building Stability Overseas Strategy
Focus Group Discussion on the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security: Bilateral support for the implementation of Women, Peace and Security in Afghanistan
This focus group discussion report looks at how the UK Government can better plan bilateral support for the implementation of its Women, Peace and Security commitments in Afghanistan, in order to ensure that, as the NAP is reviewed and updated, it can be as effective as possible in supporting Women, Peace and Security activities.
Focus Group Discussion on the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security: Sexual violence during and after conflict
This second focus group meeting concept note, facilitated by GAPS in cooperation with International Alert, considers how the UK Government can effectively support action against sexual violence through the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security. Topics of discussion include strengthening the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1820, supporting the coordination of multilateral and national interventions, justice and security sector reform, and measuring UK Government interventions for impact.
Focus Group Discussion on the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security: The participation challenge
This focus group discussion report asks how the UK Government can further encourage the meaningful participation of women in peace and security. It presents common themes and threads that permeated the discussion on the overall strategy and approach before moving on to consider specific appointment and participation issues. Recommendations were drawn up by civil society representatives and academics working on the issues, programme staff, policy advisors and senior woman appointees, and subsequently presented to civil service officials and discussed.
GAPS Position Paper: Publication of the UK National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security
This position paper welcomes the publication of the UK Government’s 2nd National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security. We are encouraged by the UK Government’s new commitment to formalising monitoring and evluation mechanisms for Women, Peace and Security commitments, including formal reporting to Parliament. We provide recommendations around ensuring meaningful consultation with civil society and around ensuring the implementation of the National Action Plan for impact, including on domestic implementation of Women, Peace and Security commitments.