History has shown that civil resistance is most successful when women are engaged, peace processes are more likely to last when women are involved, and a country’s propensity for conflict is lower with higher levels of gender equality. The Women Building Peace Award represents the Institute’s commitment to highlighting the vital role of individual women who are working every day in fragile or conflict-affected countries or regions in the pursuit of peace. The award will honor a woman peacebuilder whose substantial and practical contribution to peace is an inspiration and guiding light for future women peacebuilders.

The nomination period has officially closed. 

Women Building Peace Award nominee map

Background

The awardee will receive $10,000, to be used at the recipient’s discretion, and be recognized at a ceremony in October 2020 at the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP) in Washington, D.C. Because this award aims to celebrate the often invisible yet essential role that women play in peacebuilding, USIP strongly encourages nominations of individual women who have not been previously recognized for their work in peacebuilding.

Over the past two decades, international organizations and the U.S. government have increasingly recognized the importance of gender equality in creating enduring, peaceful societies. Women’s involvement in peace processes is vital to the overall success and longevity of peace agreements. It has been shown that when women are included in peace processes, the resulting peace agreement is 35% more likely to last at least fifteen years. Since 1992, women account for less than 3% of chief mediators in peace talks. But women are 50% of the population, and there are millions of extraordinary women working around the world every day for peace.

USIP has long been engaged in supporting women peacebuilders in countries affected by conflict—including mediators in Colombia, advocates for gender equality in Pakistan, religious leaders across the Middle East who are advancing the rights of women and girls, and leaders of nonviolent movements around the globe.

The launch of the Women Building Peace Award both reflects the Institute’s comprehensive commitment to gender and peacebuilding and demonstrates the important role women play in peacebuilding efforts. 

Eligibility Requirements

In order to be eligible for the award, nominees must meet the following requirements:

  • Nominee must be a woman who is at least 18 years of age or older.
  • Nominee must be a non-U.S. citizen working to build peace in a fragile or conflict-affected country or region.
  • Nominee cannot be currently or recently affiliated with USIP. This includes serving as a USIP staff member, contractor, fellow, or grantee within the 24 months before submission, or a former Women Building Peace awardee.

Selection Criteria

Nominees should demonstrate the following qualities:

  • Commitment to Peace: A woman whose work exemplifies a commitment to peace by preventing or resolving conflict nonviolently in a fragile or conflict-affected country or region.
  • Exceptional Leadership: A woman who exemplifies exceptional leadership through her vision and innovation, and has earned the respect of her community in the pursuit of peace.
  • Outstanding Practitioner: A woman who is a peacebuilding practitioner and works with members of local, national, or international communities in an inclusive and participatory manner.
  • Substantial Impact: A woman whose peacebuilding work has led to tangible or demonstrable results.

Timeline

  • The nomination period has officially closed. 
  • The finalist for the Women Building Peace Award will be selected in the summer of 2020. Once a finalist has been chosen, USIP will contact both nominators and nominees to inform them of the status of their nomination application.

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