USAID PROMOTE: Women in Government Policy Reform Report.

Project Report | March 25, 2019

The following report describes the outcomes of the USAID PROMOTE Women in Government project’s policy and research initiatives, as well as the challenges, lessons learned and recommendations.

The USAID Promote: Women in Government (WIG) project was designed to increase and advance the number of women in the Afghan Civil Service. The project supports government offices at the national and provincial levels to develop and implement policy reforms to remove the obstacles that prevent women from succeeding in government careers. In the short term, these changes will help women feel safer and more confident in entering careers in the civil service. Over the long run, as policy reforms begin to change the culture of the civil service, they will create a civil service that is better able to respond to the needs of all Afghans. Since 2015, WIG has undertaken two interrelated strategies to increase women’s representation in the civil service through the project’s policy component. In the first place, WIG undertook major research initiatives to understand the context surrounding women’s involvement in the government workforce. This research illuminated the key issues and barriers facing women in the civil service. Following on WIG’s research initiatives, the project partnered with key Afghan government ministries and independent agencies to roll-out an ambitious policy reform agenda based on locally-identified priorities to remove the obstacles and challenges identified through the research. Using a facilitative approach, WIG provided targeted technical assistance to Afghan government partners to draft, propose, and ultimately adopt key policy reforms to promote women’s empowerment and gender equity in the civil service. The following report describes the outcomes of WIG’s policy and research initiatives, as well as the challenges, lessons learned and recommendations.