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Publication | Introduction: WPS 20 Years On: Where Are the Women Now?

To commemorate the twentieth anniversary of Resolution 1325, this introduction discusses the state of the field in the women peace and security (WPS) agenda and outlines the challenges to implementation. It begins by ntroducing the current gaps we see in WPS practice, many of which are driven by insufficient data and lack of funding. The section that follows provides a brief discussion of the global diffusion of the WPS agenda.

We highlight the important contribution the Global South has made in implementing the agenda in the absence of great power leadership and the stultified progress of the Global North. We argue that the  WPS agenda remains hampered by poor national implementation, a lack of support for civil society initiatives and a failure to recognize the importance of its application in context. The final section introduces the articles in this issue, showing how they advance an emerging human security agenda: integrating WPS into UN-led security initiatives like R2P, and the challenges of the implementation of theWPS agenda in varied local and national contexts.We conclude by arguing that to meet future challenges, the WPS agenda must be broadened to include areas outside traditional conceptions of security and embrace the full remit of evolving security threats; in particular, structural barriers that prevent the empowerment of women across the board.

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