Gender and Politics: Maintaining Women’s Meaningful Participation in Afghanistan

Authors: Susanne Jalbert, David Cortright, Robert Lord-Biggers

Publication info: Pulte Institute, November 2020

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Afghanistan stands on the brink of an historic, albeit precarious, peace between the Taliban and the National Unity Government that presents both challenges and opportunities. On the one hand, such a peace would open new ground for reconstruction and development by eliminating, or at least diminishing significantly, the armed conflict that has plagued Afghanistan for decades. On the other, bringing conservative Taliban policies into the formal structures of governance threatens to roll-back the hard-fought, socially progressive gains of the past 20 years—particularly in terms of the rights of women. The United States and its allies have invested considerable resources to institutionalize women’s rights and opportunities in Afghanistan. An assessment of key socio-economic development indicators over the past five years shows there is a clear correlation between U.S. support and correspondent development outcomes in the country. If peace and reconstruction are to proceed, these investments must also continue.

Recommended citation

Jalbert, Susanne, David Cortright, and Robert Lord-Biggers. Gender and Politics: Maintaining Women’s Meaningful Participation in Afghanistan. Notre Dame, IN: Keough School of Global Affairs/Pulte Institute for Global Development, 2020.