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Council on Foreign Relations Women and Foreign Policy Update
October 31, 2012

Shocking Attack on Pakistani Girls' Advocate

Taliban Remains Powerful In Pakistan

In a New York Times op-ed about Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani girl shot by the Taliban for her outspoken advocacy for girls' education, CFR Edward R. Murrow Press Fellow Pir Zubair Shah writes, "The attack on Malala proved the resilience of the Taliban," demonstrating Pakistan's need "to reform and modernize its education system and syllabus, which is full of hate material." Read the Op-Ed »

Afghans Battle for Girls' Education

The battle for girls' education in Afghanistan is everyone's fight, argues CFR Fellow Gayle Tzemach Lemmon in an interview on CBS This Morning, because "there is no better correlation to predicting violence than education levels." Watch the Video »

Education Brings Women to the Frontlines

In a segment on NPR about the Taliban attack on Yousafzai, CFR Senior Fellow Isobel Coleman discusses the transformational effects of rising female literacy rates for countries facing intense cultural wars, such as Pakistan and Afghanistan. Listen to the Interview »

Entrepreneurs Innovate for Peace

Women Help Lead Afghan Tech Revolution

Amid some of the most challenging business conditions imaginable—war, minimal power, and 3 percent Internet penetration—is Afghanistan's budding tech community, which includes female entrepreneurs leading the charge, writes Lemmon in an article for Fast Company. Read the Article »

First International Day of the Girl

Girls Empowered Through Cash Transfers

In a guest post for CFR's Development Channel, Nicole Tosh from the New America Foundation investigates the benefits of electronic cash transfers, arguing that they can reduce corruption while also providing girls with greater control over their limited financial resources. Read the Post »

Girls Empowered By New Initiatives

In a Huffington Post piece on the International Day of the Girl, coauthored by actress Frieda Pinto, Coleman explores progress made in girls' empowerment and explains the important role of men and boys in raising the status of women. Read the Article »

Journey Through Transition

Women Lead Change in the Middle East and North Africa

Women's rights activists, Marianne Ibrahim from Egypt and Souad Slaoui from Morocco spoke at CFR about their countries' struggles for gender equality and what's next for women's rights in the region. Read Coleman's Event Analysis on Democracy in Development »

Egypt and Tunisia Debate Draft Constitutions

Coleman says Egypt's and Tunisia's ongoing process of drafting national constitutions have both countries facing disagreements over issues related to human rights, governance, and identity. Read the Posts on Democracy in Development »

Raising the Bar on Gender Data

Women Help Drive Economic Growth

Women entrepreneurs worldwide are driving economic growth, despite facing many social, legal, and cultural barriers. At a CFR event, food policy expert Agnes Quisumbing and World Bank development economist Markus Goldstein explore interventions to support and promote women-owned enterprises in developing economies. Read Coleman's Event Analysis on Democracy in Development »

How Well Are Countries Fulfilling Economic and Social Rights

CFR Fellow Terra Lawson-Remer says, "A large number of countries—rich and poor—are falling short of meeting their economic and social rights obligations," based on the new Social and Economic Rights Fulfillment (SERF) index, which assesses states' fulfillment of economic and social rights obligations by measuring the gap between actual and feasible social rights enjoyment. Read the Post on the Development Channel »

Issues and Innovations in Global Economic Development

Interact with CFR experts on the new Development Channel, as they highlight big debates, promising approaches, and new research and thinkers addressing opportunity and exclusion in the global economy. Check Out the Channel.



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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