ExCHANGE: Fostering transatlantic innovation to increase the participation of women in political decision-making

[Brussels 12 October 2016] From November 30 - December 2, 2016 the European Women’s Lobby, and the Reflective Democracy Campaign together with the German Marshall Fund is hosting ExCHANGE to incubate and accelerate innovative best practices for promoting women in political leadership in the European Union and the United States. ExCHANGE will bring together leading activists and representatives from circa 40 organizations working on women in political (participation by invitation only).

The United States and the European Union are two of the most powerful democracies in the world, yet they both suffer from a pervasive problem that seriously undermines their fundamental commitment to equality and justice for all: lack of women in political decision-making positions. The EU and US have taken different approaches to achieving gender equality in politics. While each has realized moderate successes with distinct methods in recent years, both have fallen short of achieving a gender equal political system. Activists for women’s advancement in politics and elected office on both sides of the Atlantic have much to learn from each other, yet until now, there has not been an opportunity to come together, sharing best practices and devising new, globally informed strategies.

The first transatlantic convention of its kind, ExCHANGE will fill a major gap in an increasingly globalizing movement to bring about societal change and achieve gender equality by promoting equal representation of women in political decision-making. The goal of ExCHANGE is to facilitate knowledge sharing, best practices and innovation between key US and EU actors working on the promotion of women in politics, in order to stimulate the creation of a robust transatlantic learning community. The purpose of the convention is to facilitate the sharing of current challenges and existing best practices with regards to increasing the number of women in positions of political leadership through series of interactive workshops, working groups, and presentation sessions.

The convention participants will form the basis of a transatlantic community dedicated to the issue or promoting women’s political leadership. Furthermore, after the convention we will compile the innovations developed by participants into a Digital Toolkit, which will be widely disseminated throughout the EU and the US as a part of the convention report.

For questions please contact Matilda Flemming at the European Women’s Lobby ( or +32 2 210 04 41.

Funded by the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme of the European Union, by the Barbara Lee Foundation, the Reflective Democracy Campaign and the US Mission to the EU.

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