Herstory

WIDE+ stems from the WIDE network, which harboured experiences of more than 25 years in advocacy and movement-building in transforming development, macro-economic and women’s rights policies at the European and international level.

Created in 1985 at the third UN World Conference on Women (Nairobi, Kenya), the WIDE network developed into a formal European network of women that brought a feminist perspective within European non-governmental development organizations, research institutions and solidarity groups. For many years it was based in Brussels through a professional secretariat, acquiring an excellent reputation. Due to financial circumstances, WIDE was dissolved in 2011 to give room to a new network.

WIDE+ Achievements at the end of 2015

 Since 2012 WIDE+ has organized several meetings and conferences -atleast once a year- that has resulted in different publications with analysis on current issues. It has informed an interested audience and members through its newsletter, website and facebook from ongoing relevant developments. It has shown its solidarity through joining numerous public civil society statements and by developing some of its own.

It has advocated for gender justice global development agenda’s as the UN Commission of the Status of Women, Sustainable Development Goals, EU trade policy and the Financing for Development Agenda.

Below overview -using the current strategic framework- highlights key achievements at the end of 2015.

1. Increase the visibility of feminist perspectives on European’s external and economic policy.

Active involvement in Post-2015 Development Agenda

WIDE+ is an active member to the Working Group of the Women’s Major Group (WMG) for development that has jointly advocated in Post-2015 Development Agenda’s, the Financing for Development (FfD) process and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) that replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). WIDE+ positioning on this issues has happened mostly through this group. See WWG final position on FfD: http://wp.me/p2KSLS-fs

WIDE+ is a member of the feminist group in CPDE (Global Civil Society Coordination Group around Post-2015 Agenda), and liaison to the regional coordination. For example, the CPDE published in March its on the Post 2015 Communication by the EU European Commission: http://www.csopartnership.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/CPDE-Response-to-the-EC-Communication-1.pdf

WIDE+ supports CSO statements, campaigns and position itself publicly

Some of the recent statements and campaigns WIDE+ joined are for a DOHA round at the World Trade Organization, a recommendation for a CEDAW article on development initiated by WIDE Austria, and for a binding Treaty on Transnational Companies.

WIDE+ also develops own positions. Most recently WIDE+ presented recommendations towards the UNHRC on the protection of families: http://wp.me/p2KSLS-if and on UNSCR resolution review 1325: http://wp.me/p2KSLS-i8.

WIDE+ continuously shares news and analysis with an interested audience and members

WIDE+ has ever since its informal inception managed to published a coupe times per year its newsletter to its 2000 subscribers. This year 4 issues have been published with articles and new on gender, development and trade. WIDE+ manages its website (wideplus.org) and facebookpage (https://www.facebook.com/WIDEfeministnetwork/). News and information is also shared among members through email lists.

2. Develop critical analysis and alternative proposals in selected policy areas.

WIDE+ Conference develops proposals for a new women’s rights paradigm

WIDE+ Conference for 2015 “Women’s Human Rights and Gender Justice in the Post-2015 era: role of WIDE+ and feminist organizations” was held in Barcelona, Spain, on 17 and 18 June, financed through the Agència Catalana de Cooperació al Desenvolupament (ACCD) in collaboration with the Agencia Española de Cooperacion Internaciónal para el Desarrollo ( AECID) through the Plataforma 2015 y más. It brought together feminist experts and activists from across Europe where they reflected on the need for a new paradigm around women’s rights in development. As a result of the conference, WIDE+ published its proposals to revitalize an encompassing women’s rights agenda available in English, Spanish and Catalan: coverenhttps://wideplus.org/2015/09/28/wide-2015-report-womens-rights-need-a-transformation-of-the-global-development-paradigm/

Thematic Ad Hoc Working Groups

Current active Ad Hoc thematic Working Groups that will be strengthened in 2016: Trade and Gender; Post2015 Development Agenda at EU level; Women, Peace and Conflict; Beijing+20 and women’s rights; Migration; Care Economy and Bodily Autonomy. See for more: here.

3. Influence key actors to promote women’s rights in order to make EU external and global development policies more gender-just.

Trade and Gender WG advocacy towards European Parliament

The Trade and Gender WG gave input into meetings or questions from a few parlementarians; WIDE+ spoke in the INTA committee reflecting on one of the few EP studies done on the EU trade and gender (blind) policy: http://wp.me/p2KSLS-hP

WIDE+ members delegation during UN CSW

Since it inception, WIDE+ has organized itself as informal delegation during the UN Commission on the Status of Women, sharing strategies and information at European level. WIDE+ members have tried to influence the governmental process, however the space for CSOS to do so has been shrinking.

WIDE+ recommendations to World Bank Group’s Gender Strategy 

WIDE+ participated in a WBG’s consultation around its newly developed Gender Strategy. Its recommendations have been also reflected in a detailed position paper: https://wideplus.org/2015/08/10/wide-critical-reflections-and-key-recommendations-for-the-world-bank-groups-new-gender-equality-strategy/

4. Contribute to strengthening member’s capacities for and engagement in trans-European and global alliances

Meetings and toolkit as part of Grundtvig project

After WIDE+ first public Conference workshop that was held in Madrid, 4 July, 2013, coverSeveral WIDE+ members organized started the Grundtvig-project “Economic Literacy across Europe: Exchange and Cooperation to Promote a Feminist Approach in Adult Education”. They are all WIDE+ members and involved other member associations and individuals into the project as experts to their meetings. The associations KULU in Denmark, Le Monde selon Les Femmes in Belgium, WIDE Austria, WIDE Switzerland and CEIM in Spain concluded their common work with a publication that showcases the different tools used to educate people on economy from a feminist perspective.

The publication is in English and Spanish to be found on the websites of the associations: http://www.wide-netzwerk.at/

http://www.mondefemmes.be/genre-developpement-nos-actions_reseaux-plateformes_grundtvig-reseaux-partenariat-europeen-genre-alphabetisation-economique.htm

Alliance building

WDE+ and WIDE+members met with other networks throughout the year. In particular WIDE+ strengthened relations with the European Women’s Lobby and started the same process with CONCORD.

5. Sustain WIDE+ as a democratic and participatory network

WIDE+ has been formally established as democratic Non-Profit Association and in 2015 all formalities were finalized.

 

WIDE Switzerland Gender & Sustainability Conference 2014
WIDE Switzerland Gender & Sustainability Conference 2014

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