Addressing Extremism and Militarism
ICAN has become a recognized actor in the international P/CVE space with its particular attention to women-led local civil society organizations and gendered approaches to addressing extremism. From a policy standpoint, our work is firmly situated in the women, peace and security agenda with attention to women’s leadership and agency.
We view extremism as inherently gendered (as it relates to women and men). It is also directly relevant to women’s rights, peace and security, because the co-option, coercion or control of women is integral to the ideology of extremist movements, hence the deliberate targeting of women who dare to stand up and speak out against these ideologies and lead efforts to prevent and counter the spread of extremism.
“Neither countering nor preventing violent extremism or conflict is enough. The international community must articulate and act by values and principles that promote positive peace, dignity, rights, and pluralism in practical ways.”
Our work is evolving and is organized around five broad activity areas and related structures that we have created:
1. Networking – The Women’s Alliance for Security Leadership (WASL), which provides a platform for our outreach and engagement with independent women-led organizations working on a range of issues pertaining to P/CVE in countries affected by extremism, crises and militarism.
2. Analysis – The What the Women Say gendered political and security country report, thematic briefs and working papers, which are developed based on consultations with our partners who provide the expertise and experience of practice, as well as academic scholars and international experts. These briefs inform our advocacy and are the basis for discussions in the GSX working groups.
3. Advocacy/Influence – The Global Solutions Exchange (GSX), which is a platform launched in partnership with the Norwegian government, for enabling systematic and structured engagement between WASL (and other civil society actors including the Global Center for Security Cooperation) and governmental and multilateral entities responsible for peace, security and P/CVE, and related media and public events work
4. Funding – The Inclusive Challenge Fund (ICF), which enables ICAN to provide grants to partners based on a participatory process of project design and related to P/CVE in areas that our partners have defined as being relevant to the agenda. The principles driving our approach to the ICF are that we trust our partners assessment of needs and invest in their judgment. In return they trust us, as we offer strategic support and guidance to innovate and test new approaches. As a result, the projects funded are informed by the participatory process, but fully owned and led by our partners.
5. Partner Support – Technical assistance to partners, which includes institutional, professional and personal capacity building, and providing opportunities for collaboration, regional and peer-to-peer learning and solidarity.