Join us for an HKS Gender and Security Seminar Series event featuring Theresia Thylin, PhD Candidate in the Essex University (UK) Department of Sociology and a Gender and Humanitarian Specialist at the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) in New York. Chelsea Green, PhD candidate in the Harvard Department of Government, will serve as a discussant. This event is organized by Dara Kay Cohen, Ford Foundation Associate Professor of Public Policy, and Zoe Marks, Lecturer in Public Policy.
Megan MacKenzie's presentation explores the history of the combat exclusion and the recent integration of women into combat roles. It introduces the equal/different double bind as a framework for understanding the impossible expectations often put on women in male dominated fields. Women are expected to be equal and integrate fully into the work culture; yet they are also expected to ‘add value’ and transform institutions. Does this equal/different double bind set women up for failure? Her presentation explores this question through an analysis of women in combat.
Megan MacKenzie, Associate Professor of Government and International Relations at the University of Sydney
Gender and Security Seminar Series: Does Integration Change Gender Attitudes? The Effect of Randomly Assigning Women to Traditionally Male Teams with Dr. Andreas Kotsadam
Join us for the first installment of the Gender and Security Seminar Series. In this seminar, Andreas Kotsadam examines whether the exposure of men to women in a traditionally male-dominated environment can change gendered attitudes. The context is the military in Norway, where female recruits were randomly assigned to some squads but not others during boot camp. Findings show that living and working with women for 8 weeks caused men to adopt more egalitarian attitudes. Specifically, there was a 14 percentage point increase in the fraction of men who think mixed-gender teams perform as well or better than same-gender teams, an 8 percentage point increase in men who think household work should be shared equally and a 14 percentage point reduction in men who strongly disavow feminine traits. Contrary to what many policymakers have predicted, there is no evidence that integrating women into squads hurt male recruits' satisfaction with boot camp or their plans to continue in the military. These findings demonstrate that even in a highly gender-skewed environment, gender stereotypes are malleable and can be altered by integrating members of the opposite sex.
Andreas Kotsadam, Senior Researcher, The Frisch Centre; Affiliated Researcher, Department of Economics, University of Oslo
On Her Account: Can Strengthening Women’s Financial Control Boost Female Labor Supply? With Simone Schaner
Across the world, the increasing use of digital payments for government to person transactions for social programs has provided an entry point for the world’s poor into the formal financial sector. This phenomenon begs the question: how can governments best leverage this opportunity to enable economic empowerment for women? This seminar explores research that uses a randomized controlled trial to assess how financial inclusion coupled with targeted benefit payments impact women's labor force participation and economic welfare in India.
Simone Schaner, Assistant Professor of Economics, Department of Economics, Dartmouth College
How have gender roles in war changed over the last century? As women have openly joined militaries and paramilitary organizations, the roles of women in service have advanced and diversified. In the United States, the Combat Exclusion Policy was recently lifted to allow women to serve in frontline combat and complete combat operations. Despite increasing numbers of countries beginning to expand the role of women in their militaries, an analysis comparing the U.S. media coverage of British girls in World War I and the #BringBackOurGirls campaign in 2014 suggests that significations of girls as wars’ innocent, hapless victims in need of men’s protection remain prominent in media outlets. This seminar revisits Sue Rae Peterson’s (1977) idea of the ‘protection racket’ to analyze the current status of women in 21st century war and conflict. Speaker: Laura Sjoberg, WAPPP Fellow; Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, University of Florida
Now that Hillary Clinton is out of government—for the time being at least—this is an opportune time to reflect on the origins and development of the Hillary Doctrine, the challenges and controversy it engendered while she was Secretary of State, and how the Doctrine has affected both the United States and other nations. Is the Hillary Doctrine truly in the American national interest, and furthermore, is it in the interests of countries troubled by war and instability? With the end of her tenure, will U.S. foreign policy continue to focus on women and girls and to what extent does it match the reality of U.S. government policy and programming? In this discussion, we will discuss whether the Hillary Clinton Doctrine will indeed bring about a more stable future for the nations of the world. Speaker: Valerie Hudson, Professor and George H.W. Bush Chair, Texas A&M University
Since 2010, an all-female peacekeeping contingent has been monitoring a fragile ceasefire between the Government of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front in the southern Philippines. Drawing on in-depth interviews with the peacekeepers, WAPPP Fellow Margaret Jenkins explains how this all-female unit responds to myriad sources of violence, and navigates conservative gender norms. Do these women feel they have been taken seriously by Islamist rebels and Filipino soldiers? What have been their main challenges and successes on the ground? This case is one of several that Jenkins is studying as part of a two-year research project funded by the Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council of Canada on the effectiveness and experience of all-female contingents working in conflict zones. Speaker: Margaret Jenkins, Research Associate on Peacekeeping, Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace & Security, Georgetown University; Postdoctoral Fellow, Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council of Canada; WAPPP Fellow