The UN Women Capstone team has been tasked with reviewing existing literature on intersectionality within international development, and interviewing key informants to produce a report analyzing existing applications of intersectionality. The objective of this research was to explore how UN Women can better identify drivers of exclusion and mainstream intersectional approaches within Rule of Law and Women, Peace and Security agenda, particularly in conflict- or crisis-affected areas and countries in transition.
The term ‘intersectionality’ represents the interaction of multiple compounded identities and experiences. Considering the multiplicity of such interactions, the Capstone team decided to look at women and girls with disabilities as an entry point for research. The analysis focused on different interventions by UN entities, governments, INGOs, and CSOs, which was used to produce key findings and recommendations relevant to improving the application of intersectional approaches in future programming/operational support, advocacy, and capacity building initiatives.
Some of the findings and recommendations included the need for adequately disaggregated data, that goes beyond the common divisions of gender and age, and includes a wider range of underrepresented identities. The Capstone team also emphasized the importance of developing participatory processes within the areas of Rule of Law, and Women, Peace and Security, such as encouraging the inclusion of CSOs in designing and implementing interventions for a greater intersectional impact. The team presented a list of practical tools that practitioners can utilize in the format of a menu of services, outlining country specific examples and promising practices for mainstreaming intersectionality.