Against gender discrimination in global policymaking on peace and security: boycotting participation in all-male panels

At the May 2014 meeting of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW) meeting at the United Nations, 17 experts were invited to speak at the expert panels during the official plenary on autonomous weapons, filling 18 slots. None were women. The organisers suggested that there were no suitable women to fill any of the slots. This is of course preposterous. The panels at the NGO side events held during the lunch breaks at the CCW meeting included qualified and experienced women and men. For example, Sarah Knuckey of the NYU School of Law Global Justice Clinic has compiled a list of women actively writing or speaking on the issue of autonomous weapons.

We believe that the practice of selecting only men to speak on panels in global policymaking forums is unjust. It excludes the voices of women and other gender identities from such events, running counter to UN Security Council Resolution 1325, which commits to inclusion of women in discussions on peace and security. Global policymaking efforts on peace and security – including disarmament, arms control and the protection of civilians – must include people of a diversity of gender identities.

In response to the all-male expert selection at the CCW last week, women involved in the Campaign to Stop Killer Robots gathered to discuss ways to advance the participation and visibility of women in meetings on disarmament, peace and security. One suggestion from this group was that men should refuse to participate in all-male panels at meetings within this field.

As part of this effort, Article 36 is compiling a list of people working in the field of peace and security – particularly disarmament, arms control and the protection of civilians – who benefit from their male gender and have committed not to speak on panels that include only men. Organisational affiliation is included for identification purposes only and does not necessarily indicate organisational policies.

Guy Abraham, Save the Children – UK

Jeff Abramson, Landmine and Cluster Munition Monitor – USA

Rob Acheson, Canadian Peace Initiative – Canada

Christian Illman Andersen, Norwegian People’s Aid – Norway

Bernard Aryeetey, Save the Children – UK

Peter Asaro, The New School and International Committee for Robot Arms Control – USA

Simon Bagshaw, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs – Switzerland

Deepayan Basu Ray, ActionAid – UK

Jon Bergeå, Swedish Fellowship of Reconciliation – Sweden

Dr. Matthew Bolton, Pace University – USA

Lorey Campese, Control Arms coalition – USA

Francesco Checchi, Save the Children – UK

Christian N. Ciobanu, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation and Ban All Nukes Generation – USA

Jean-Marie Collin, Parliamentarians for Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament (PNND) and Group for Research and Information on Peace and Security (GRIP) – France

John Converset, Comboni Missionaries – USA

Brendan Cox, Save the Children – UK

David Culp, Friends Committee on National Legislation – USA

Paul Dillane, Amnesty International UK

Marco Fey, Peace Research Institute Frankfurt (PRIF) – Germany

Conor Fortune, Amnesty International International Secretariat – UK

Peter Frankental, Amnesty International UK

Steve Goose, Human Rights Watch – USA

George Graham, Save the Children – UK

Paul Hannon, Mines Action Canada – Canada

Atle Karlsen, Norwegian People’s Aid – Norway

Chris Loughran – Mines Advisory Group – UK

Daniel Högsta, International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons – Switzerland

Liakat Hossain Khan, Association for Sanitation and Economic Development – Bangladesh

Gareth Jenkins, Save the Children – UK

Ansel Lee, Kingston and St. Andrew Action Forum – Jamaica

Jöran Lindeberg, Swedish Fellowship of Reconciliation – Sweden

John Loretz, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War – USA

Magnus Lovold, International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons – Switzerland

Fred Lubang – Nonviolence International Southeast Asia – Thailand

Luc Mampaey, Group for Research and Information on Peace and Security – Belgium

Neil Mather, Save the Children – UK

Robbie McIntyre, Save the Children – UK

Richard Moyes, Article 36 – UK

Thomas Nash, Article 36 – UK

Robert Perkins, Action on Armed Violence – UK

Jarmo Pykälä, SaferGlobe – Finland

Christian Ruge, International Law and Policy Institute – Norway

Frederico Santopinto, Group for Research and Information on Peace and Security – Belgium

Nadav Sha-altiel, Israeli Disarmament Movement – Israel

John Sifton, Human Rights Watch – USA

Anthony Silkoff, Save the Children – UK

Frank Slijper, PAX – Netherlands

Oliver Sprague, Amnesty International UK

Noel Stott, Institute for Security Studies – South Africa

Wilbert van der Zejden, PAX – Netherlands

Richard Warburton, Save the Children – UK

Rick Wayman, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation – USA

Doug Weir, Toxic Remnants of War Project – UK

Francis West, Save the Children – UK

Jack Wilson, Save the Children – UK

Cristian Wittmann – SEHLAC – Brazil

Tim Wright, International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons – Australia

Robert Zuber, Global Action to Prevent War – USA

When invited to speak, men should ask whether one or more women will be speaking on the panel and indicate that they will only participate if women are included. Men should also send names of women working in the sector to the panel organisers, including the list mentioned above.

We invite all policymakers, advocates, activists and campaigners active in global policymaking on peace and security who identify as men to join this effort by sending an email to with your name and primary affiliation.

This initiative seeks to stand alongside and complement other policies aimed at reducing gender discrimination – and all types of discrimination – in global policymaking and more broadly.

Posted in: Conference statements, Gender and disarmament,