Iraq: Advancing Women's Rights Key to Good Governance

By John Lee.

With support from Global Affairs Canada, the Institute on Governance (IOG) is implementing a large scale project on fiscal federalism and decentralization in Iraq.

While the project has a wide range of good governance and capacity-building objectives, one of its specific goals is to empower women to step into leadership roles. The program targets female elected officials (at the federal and provincial/governorate levels), public servants, and civil society leaders for up-skilling and training.

The efforts focus on building awareness of government processes, best practices for community engagement, and the communications skills (and other competencies) needed to achieve optimal results through a series of workshops, meetings, and formal training through a cohort-centric model.

A recent report from the Institute on Governance says women’s rights in Iraq have seen uneven progress. "According to the OECD, women and women’s rights in Iraq have been, and continue to be, negatively impacted by the country’s recent conflicts. Women continue to face challenges to their safety in their homes and society and continue to participate at a lower rate in the workforce and government," it says.

Author Jennifer Mowbray concludes:

"Change is happening. Women are running for office. They are achieving senior positions in their respective public service organizations. They are organizing together to mobilize for policy and advocacy goals. Male champions are emerging, advocating for them to move on to greater things. The IOG is honoured to support these efforts. We look forward to the next phase of our work in Iraq as part a broader effort to advance governance practices in Canada and abroad."

More here from the IoG.

(Source: Institute on Governance)

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