SOAS University of London

Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy

CISD Annual Lecture: Women in Diplomacy

Professor Ann Towns

Date: 11 March 2019Time: 5:30 PM

Finishes: 11 March 2019Time: 8:00 PM

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: Brunei Lecture Theatre (BLT)

Type of Event: Annual Lecture

Professor Ann Towns gives the CISD Annual Lecture, in recognition of winning the 2018 Bertha Lutz Prize for research on women in diplomacy. The prize is a collaboration between the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy (CISD) at SOAS, and the Diplomatic Studies Section (DPLST) of the International Studies Association (ISA).

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CISD Annual Lecture 2019: Women in Diplomacy

When public office opened up for women among the states of the early 20th century, there were generally two exceptions: women were not allowed to join the military or diplomacy. Not until the past two decades have a growing number of women entered diplomacy. What does the encounter between women and diplomacy – which was male-dominated for over a century – look like? In what ways are diplomatic practices gendered? How do women diplomats experience and navigate the gendered terrain of diplomacy? What theoretical insights might a study of gender and diplomacy bring to diplomatic studies and its recent turn to practices? Professor Ann Towns, PI of the Gender and Diplomacy (GenDip) Program in political science at the University of Gothenburg will address these questions in a talk on her new book project.

Ann Towns is professor in political science at the University of Gothenburg, PI of the Gender and Diplomacy Program (GenDip), Wallenberg Academy Fellow and recipient of the 2018 Bertha Lutz Prize. She received her PhD in political science, with a minor in feminist studies, at the University of Minnesota in 2004. Towns has served as associate editor of International Studies Quarterly and a member of the editorial boards of Cambridge Studies in Gender and Politics, International Studies Review, Politics and Internasjonal Politikk. She has also served on various sections and committees of the International Studies Association.

Towns’ research centers around questions of norms, hierarchies and resistance in international politics, generally with a focus on gender. She is the author of Women and States: Norms and Hierarchies in International Society (2010, Cambridge University Press) and editor of Gendering Diplomacy and International Negotiation (2018, Palgrave, with Karin Aggestam), and her articles have been published in journals such as International Organization and European Journal of International Relations. Her work has received multiple awards from sections within the International Studies Association and the American Political Science Association. As PI of the GenDip program and research group, she is currently conducting a large research project on gender dynamics in diplomacy, an inter-state institution that has long been dominated by men but where more women have entered within the past decade.

The event will be chaired by Dr Dan Plesch (CISD, SOAS), with a response from Marissa Conway (Co-Founder and UK Director, the Centre for Feminist Foreign Policy).

The Lecture will be followed by a drinks reception in BG02 (Formerly the Brunei Suite).

The event is free to attend, please register on Eventbrite.

This event will be filmed and live streamed.

Organiser: CISD

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