Women and Foreign Policy Program

The Women and Foreign Policy program is a major component of CFR's Civil Society, Markets, and Democracy initiative. The objective of the Women and Foreign Policy program is to bring the status of women firmly into the mainstream foreign policy debate. Thanks in part to its efforts, there is now broad understanding of the importance of women's empowerment to a host of development, health, security, and other global priorities.

The program's current areas of focus include:

  • Improving maternal health in Afghanistan.
  • U.S. leadership in international reproductive health and family planning.
  • The role of technology and private sector resources in empowering women economically.
  • Entrepreneurs and market linkages in conflict and post-conflict environments.

Please see below for relevant publications:

High Stakes for Young Lives

High Stakes for Young Lives

Authors: Gayle Tzemach Lemmon and Lynn S. ElHarake

By developing a stronger understanding of what works and what does not in combatting child marriage, policymakers and civil society leaders will be better equipped to end child marriage. Senior Fellow Gayle Tzemach Lemmon and Research Associate Lynn S. ElHarake idenitfy the drivers of child marriage and the factors that can curb it.

See more in Global; Women; Society and Culture

Ending Child Marriage

Ending Child Marriage

Author: Rachel B. Vogelstein

Ending child marriage is not only a moral imperative—it is a strategic imperative that will further critical U.S. foreign policy interests in development, prosperity, stability, and the rule of law.

See more in Women; Children

Hagel's Afghanistan-less Hearing

Author: Gayle Tzemach Lemmon
Foreign Policy

Throughout Chuck Hagel's marathon confirmation hearing, America's decade-long war in Afghanistan was noticeably overlooked. But it is curious to see the next secretary of defense receive so few inquiries from senators about the war whose end he will presumably oversee in the coming years, says Gayle Tzemach Lemmon.

See more in United States; Military Leadership

Malala, Others on Front Lines in Fight for Women

Author: Gayle Tzemach Lemmon
cnn.com

Despite the fact that Malala Yousafzai, the fourteen-year-old Pakistani women's rights activist, survived an assassination attempt by the Taliban, similar attacks against women, like the one in India, are on the rise. Gayle Tzemach Lemmon says that these attacks are efforts to stamp out women's progress and the potential of women worldwide will not be realized if this type of violence is tolerated.

See more in Afghanistan; Pakistan; Women; Children

What's At Stake for Afghan Women

Author: Gayle Tzemach Lemmon
cnn.com

Women have made strides in Afghanistan since 2001, but huge issues still remain. While the United States focuses on withdrawal, Afghan women are still in the fight and will be long after 2014, says Gayle Tzemach Lemmon.

See more in Afghanistan; Women

Ensuring Opportunities for Women

Author: Isobel Coleman
United Nations Association of the United Kingdom

Women in the Arab world have certainly played a prominent role in their countries' transition, writes Isobel Coleman, but cannot take for granted that their activism will translate into political influence or legal gains in the emerging systems.

See more in Middle East and North Africa; Women