Women in local democracy

What we do


UNDP has been supporting more active engagement of women in decision-making at the local level

Since its independence in 1991, Armenia has ratified over 50 Conventions and other international legal instruments reaffirming its commitment, among other, to equality between women and men, including equal representation of women in decision-making processes.

Policy changes, however, are slow to translate into the day-to-day experiences of most Armenian citizens. Consequently, the level of women’s representation and meaningful participation in governance and decision-making continues to be low.

Women comprise 11 percent of the Members of Parliament and Ministers. There are no female Governors and City Mayors, and none of the 12 communities of Yerevan have female leaders or deputies. According to the Central Election Commission (2011), women comprise barely nine per cent of representatives in local government, and out of 915 rural communities there are only 17 female community leaders.

The status quo is justified by pejorative stereotypes on the role and the position of women and men in society. These stereotypes seriously impede women’s engagement in decision-making by discouraging many of them from playing a more active role, especially in rural communities.

In partnership with the European Union (EU), UNDP's supports:

·       Engagement of women in decision-making and governance at the local level;

·       Advancement of elected female representatives in executing their public duties;

·       Building mechanisms for participatory governance in communities;

·       Inciting a national conversation on the role of women and men in Armenia.

In partnership with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), UNDP supports:

·        Women and youth leadership and engagement in local governance processes in Syunik and Vayots Dzor regions

·        Integration of the gender equality principles and approaches in the current Territorial Administration Reform (community clustering) in Armenia

·        Implementation of the above reform through knowledge products, targeted events and technology-based innovative methods. 

 

Some results so far

Armenia’s Gender Policy Strategic Action Plan (2011-2015) came into force in 2011.

With UNDP’s support 133 female candidates have stood for positions in local government, of which 87 were (re)elected by their communities.

1020 women – servants in local government, employees of local and regional administration, civic activists, and other – received knowledge on leadership, local governance, participatory processes, gender equality and other.

Participatory, gender-sensitive and inclusive governance strengthened in number of regions/communities in Armenia through (i) model of scenario-based town-hall meetings for participatory decision-making on community level, (ii) micro-referendum tool, enabling local governments in 5 communities to make inquiries among citizens on community priorities via SMS (with support of RBEC Innovation Fund).

Overall, 623 women run for elections in the big cycle of elections in 2012 of which 406 were elected, but this is still a tiny proportion of 5,384 elected representatives to the local government.

 

Who Finances it?




2012

Donor name

Amount contributed per year

European Union

$ 207,687.44

UNDP

$ 0.00

2013

European Union

$ 231,876.00

UNDP

$ 98,000.00

2014

European Union

$ 199,907,12

UNDP

$ 2,000.00

2015

European Union

$ 120,168.00

SDC

$ 175,716.00

UNDP

$ 2,000.00

2016

SDC

$ 144,284

Delivery in previous fiscal year

December 2014 $ 201,907.12
Overview
Status:
Active
Project start date:
24 April 2012
Estimated end date:
31 December 2016
Geographic coverage:
Armenia
Focus Area:
Democratic Governance
MDG
MDG 3 - Promote gender equality and empower women
Project Coordinator:
Natalya Harutyunyan
Partners:
European Union, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, RA Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Territorial Administration and Emergency Situations, Armenian Association of Women with University Education, International Center of Human Development, Armenian Public Relations Association
Project Related Documents
Annual Workplan
Donors
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European Union
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Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation