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Council on Foreign Relations Women and Foreign Policy Update

Innovations for Development and Peace

The Convening Power of Traditional Donors

Isobel Coleman discusses the importance of leveraging new resources, such as commitment accounts and mobile technology, for poverty alleviation. Read more »

VIDEO: Entrepreneurs Defying the Odds

In an interview on The Early Show, Gayle Tzemach Lemmon discusses how Afghan entrepreneurs (and especially women) shape the future of peace in Afghanistan. Watch the Video »

One in Two Girls Is Wed Before the Age of Eighteen in India

Lemmon investigates the "Apni Beti, Apna Dhan" (Our Daughters, Our Wealth) program in northern India, which fights child marriage by using cash incentives for families. Read more »

VIDEO: Overcoming USAID's Greatest Obstacles

In an interview on Coleman's blog, Deputy Administrator at the U.S. Agency for International Development Don Steinberg explains how results have become ever more important as the country's leading development agency struggles in an environment of constrained budgets. Watch the Video on "Democracy in Development" »

Unlocking Economic Potential

VIDEO: Resilience Amid Recession

At TedxWomen, Lemmon calls on the world to move beyond "micro hopes" and "micro ambitions" for women who are creating jobs against daunting obstacles. Watch the Video »

Rescuing 100 Million Girls from Child Marriage in the Next Decade

At a CFR meeting, researchers and advocates Yasmeen Hassan and Anju Malhotra discuss the scourge of child marriage worldwide and analyze the effectiveness and scalability of economic incentives to end the practice. Listen to the Audio »

VIDEO: Equality for Afghan Women a "Must Have"

In an interview with news anchor Christiane Amanpour, Lemmon argues that the struggle to protect Afghan women's rights "is not about special treatment, it is about the basic right to contribute to your family—to go to school and go to work, and Afghan women have fought for those rights for a long time." Watch the Video »

Fulfilling Political Commitments

Afghan Women Remind World Leaders: "Don't Forget Us"

Lemmon examines the barriers to Afghan women's participation in the Bonn Conference and what it means for economic development, peace, and stability in the country. Read more »

Delivering Solutions for Development

Jill Sheffield, founder of Women Deliver and Family Care International, speaks to CFR's Women and Foreign Policy Advisory Council about progress made toward providing universal access to maternal and reproductive health care. Learn More About the Advisory Council »

Must Reads

World Bank Estimates 4 Million Women Go "Missing" Each Year in Developing Countries

The 2012 World Development report, Gender Equality and Development, argues that "misallocating women's skills and talent comes at a high (and rising) economic cost." Read the Full Report »

Yemen, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia Rank Last in Providing Economic Participation and Opportunity for Women

The World Economic Forum's Global Gender Gap Report 2011 says that "Countries and companies will thrive if women are educated and engaged as fundamental pillars of the economy." Read the Full Report »

Despite Progress, "Justice Is Still Out of Reach for Millions of Women"

UN Women's report, In Pursuit of Justice, reveals that "117 countries have equal pay laws, yet, in practice, women are still paid up to 30 percent less than men in some countries. And women still do more unpaid domestic and caring work than men in every region of the world." Read the Full Report »



CFR's Women and Foreign Policy program works with leading scholars to analyze how elevating the status of women and girls advances U.S. foreign policy objectives and to bring the status of women into the mainstream foreign policy debate. Among its areas of focus are global health and education, the role of women in peacekeeping, and women’s economic participation.

Rachel Vogelstein
Director and Senior Fellow, Women and
Foreign Policy Program

Catherine Powell
Fellow, Women and
Foreign Policy Program

Gayle Tzemach Lemmon
Senior Fellow, Women and
Foreign Policy Program

Hannah Chartoff
Research Associate, Women and
Foreign Policy Program

Valerie Wirtschafter
Research Associate, Women and
Foreign Policy Program


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