Increasing the Number of Women Mediators in Peacemaking Initiatives
Mediation refers to one or more individuals facilitating a negotiation among disputants to help them try to resolve, to their satisfaction, an issue or issues of concern. There is increasing interest in using mediation in a wide variety of circumstances (e.g., divorce, child custody, family disagreements, small claims issues, business matters, community problems, environmental issues and intrastate violent conflicts). Although professional women mediators in many countries are often involved in certain kinds of mediations as mediators or as members of mediation teams, this is not always the case. Examined here is the fact that few women mediators are involved as lead mediators or members of mediation teams in conflict zones - areas that are often large, involve complex issues and have been, or continue to be, violent. This article first discusses the concepts of inclusive peacebuilding and inclusive peacemaking. This is followed by a short discussion about mediation, and then further information is provided about women mediators. Finally, suggestions are made to increase the number of women mediators in complex, large-scale conflicts.
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