Analysing international policy processes and Lithuania’s role in them
Review Mar 28, 2024

eFP in Focus: NATO’s Women, Peace, and Security Agenda in the Baltic States

Photo source: Bernd von Jutrczenka/dpa/picture-alliance

On its 75th anniversary, NATO has seized the opportunity to update its policy on Women, Peace and Security (WPS), a commitment that was made during the Vilnius Summit in 2023. A greater focus on deterrence and collective defence is a necessary update as the last iteration of the policy, released in 2018, did not fully articulate how WPS principles would be integrated into this core NATO task. In 2024, the strategic picture has changed dramatically two years after Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, and this has informed all the policy updates at NATO.

What is distinct about the policy update on Women, Peace and Security, however, is the engagement with the Civil Society Advisory Panel on Women, Peace and Security, which is a consultative body that has been put in place specifically to provide an external input into NATO policies and practices. As the NATO WPS staff drafts the new policy, as tasked by the North Atlantic Council, advice is also being sought internally from both civilian and military bodies, and through an independent assessment which has provided a series of recommendations. In true NATO fashion, the process will culminate through negotiations as part of NATO’s committee process (in this case, the Partnership and Cooperative Security Committee), as the member states wrangle over the final wording to be adopted.

Read the full publication here.

The publication was prepared in the framework of EESC project “From Diplomacy to War Trenches: war in Ukraine and Changing Attitudes towards the Role of Women in International Relations and Warfare”, supported by the Swedish Institute through the Embassy of Sweden in Vilnius (Grant No. 300590785).

Stéfanie von Hlatky is a Full Professor of Political Studies and the Canada Research Chair of Gender, Security and the Armed Forces at Queen’s University.