Mobilising for Women’s Rights: the Role of Resources


This research undertaken in Ghana and Bangladesh explored the link between aid reform as a result of the Paris Declaration and its impact on women’s rights organisations in aid-dependent countries. The Rights and Resources conference was organised to share findings and think strategically on future interventions.

The research done

This research was undertaken by KIT in collaboration with Pathways of Women’s Empowerment. The research (2009-2010) sought to clarify the conditions in which external financial support to women’s rights organisations (WROs) has a positive impact on women’s empowerment. It also sought to clarify the conditions in which successful women’s organising is viable without such support.

Eleven case study organisations (five in Bangladesh and six in Ghana) were examined using participatory methods of critical reflection. A wide network of WROs were involved in the study in both countries, as were donor staff in the countries concerned as well as staff from their head offices. The research produced country reports for Bangladesh and Ghana and a synthesis report. Reports were also produced by the gender officer of the global and regional donor institutions.

Sharing the results

The two-day international conference entitled ‘Rights and resources: the effects of financing on organising for women’s rights’ was held in Amsterdam in March 2011 to share the results of the research project and to think strategically about financing for gender equality and women’s empowerment. The conference was well attended with a total of 53 invited delegates. Delegates included representatives from International Donor Organisations, Women’s Rights Organisations, Universities, and independent consultants. Representatives of the case study organisations in Bangladesh and Ghana were also in attendance.