State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

How Women Tackle Challenges of Peace and Security

By Mikaela Luttrell-Rowland

How are access to affordable housing, quality health care, racial justice, reproductive rights and economic equality all linked to a Women, Peace and Security agenda? What are the most pressing challenges and needs for women activists and peacebuilders in New York City and beyond?

Leymah Gbowee
Leymah Gbowee

We’ll address those questions and others on April 20 at a closed workshop hosted by the Earth Institute’s new Women, Peace and Security Program, directed by Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee at the Advanced Consortium on Cooperation, Conflict, and Complexity, Columbia University. The program seeks to contribute to greater understanding of how women have been able to successfully influence sustainable peace through everyday activism.

The workshop will feature a range of stakeholders: local New York City peacebuilders and activists at the front lines of racial justice, immigrants rights, workers rights, environmental rights, and reproductive and economic justice. The workshop will create an opportunity to exchange experiences and knowledge and to reflect on pressing questions and challenges faced by women mobilizing for peace and the often less-considered aspects of security.

Guests at this meeting will span a variety of programmatic approaches, as well as a range of interpretations of what peace mobilization means.

By bringing together a diverse group of activists, practitioners and scholars, the Women, Peace and Security program will showcase an intersectional approach to questions of peace and security, as well as a framework that views security in ways that are both individual and structural.

Participants will discuss lessons learned and ongoing challenges in the contexts of conflict, instability and inequality. By inviting participants from different regions and involving a range of voices and approaches, the workshop aims to generate new insights and connections around the theme of women’s mobilization, activism, peacebuilding and sustainability.

Mikaela Luttrell-Rowland, PhD, is the associate director of the Women, Peace and Security Program.






Banner featuring a collage of extreme heat images.

Recent record-breaking heat waves have affected communities across the world. The Extreme Heat Workshop will bring together researchers and practitioners to advance the state of knowledge, identify community needs, and develop a framework for evaluating risks with a focus on climate justice. Register by June 15

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