Promoting systemic change towards gender equality

In order to progress change towards gender equality for all, we must transform the structures that underpin inequality.

IWDA contributes to systemic change through our own knowledge creation and advocacy which seeks to transform discourse on gender equality. We want to equip feminist movements and allies with the evidence they need to effect lasting change.

We’re committed to utilising our feminist voice and expertise to undertake advocacy in spaces where we have unique access and influence, in particular with the Australian Government. 

As part of coalitions and feminist movements, we are contributing to powerful and transformative collective action.

Creating equitable South-North partnerships

IWDA is proud to commission new research led by Oceanic feminist researcher and storyteller ‘Ofa-Ki-Levuka Guttenbeil-Likiliki. Creating Equitable South-North Partnerships: Nurturing the and Voyaging the Audacious Ocean Together explores the knowledge and experience of 35 Pacific women’s rights activists. The research captures, amplifies and represents their voices as they share perspectives on interacting with Global North organisations over the past three decades.

This ground-breaking and illuminating research calls for a paradigm shift and proposes a model for developing equitable partnerships and achieving empowered relationships. The research will guide IWDA’s practice going forward, particularly our efforts to decolonise our practice and become the best we can be in the world at north-south partnerships.

Download the research

Feminist Foreign Policy

Feminist foreign policy is an approach which places gender equality as the central goal of foreign policy, in recognition that gender equality is a predictor of peaceful and flourishing societies. There are now 10 countries which have formally adopted feminist foreign policy: Sweden, France, Canada, Luxembourg, Mexico, Spain, Libya, Germany and the Netherlands.

In response to calls for greater evidence and awareness of how and why these policies have come about, IWDA implemented a multi-country qualitative research project, From Seeds to Roots: Trajectories towards Feminist Foreign Policy.

The research explores the factors that influence the declaration of feminist foreign policies as well as key debates and contested questions on the issue. It provides a strengthened evidence base to support advocacy for uptake of feminist foreign policies, and highlights areas for further enquiry.

The Australian Feminist Foreign Policy Coalition, convened by IWDA, includes supporters of feminist foreign policy working across foreign policy, defence, security, women’s rights, international development and other related sectors.

 An Australian feminist foreign policy would place gender equality as the central goal of foreign policy and be grounded in First Nations approaches and worldviews. It would be institutionalised across government and would be informed by, and accountable to, civil society, women’s rights organisations, and First Nations peoples from Australia, the Pacific and Asia.  

Read more about the Australian Feminist Foreign Policy Coalition

Equality Insights

Equality Insights is IWDA’s flagship program that uses gender data to advance gender equality. Through this program, IWDA has led the development of a gender-sensitive measure of poverty and inequality. This data shows how gender, age, disability, location and other factors shape experiences of poverty and inequality, helping to develop inclusive policies and solutions.

Equality Insights provides an evidence base for policy-makers, women’s rights organisations and other advocates for equality. This is a foundation for IWDA’s advocacy for, and contribution to, better gender data to achieve gender equality, because we know that data plays an essential role in revealing inequalities and the barriers that sustain them.

Equality Insights is a vehicle for transformative, systemic change and builds on IWDA’s commitment to shifting systems and structures, behaviours and attitudes, data and analysis, that stand in the way of equality for all.

Find out more about Equality Insights

Imagining Feminist Futures after COVID-19

The COVID-19 crisis has highlighted the flaws in our societies. From the patriarchal, capitalist, racist underpinnings of everyday life to the staggering inequalities within and between countries.

But this attention is also creating a new impetus for change. Arundhati Roy has called the pandemic a portal. We have the opportunity to effect once in a generation change, articulate alternative futures, and lay the groundwork for a new, feminist reality.

Imagining Feminist Futures After COVID-19 aims to support feminist movements to think through the ways in which the COVID-19 crisis is changing the future trajectories – both positive and negative – for feminist social change.

To take part, you can host a workshop with your organisation or networks to explore feminist futures in 2030 using a new, adaptable methodology designed by Changeist with a consortium of feminist futurists.

Then, you can use the outcomes of your workshop to inform your own storytelling, advocacy and organising.

Find out more about Feminist Futures


Gender and Climate Change in the Pacific and Asia

Working with Men and Boys to Advance Gender Equality

Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights

Making Infrastructure Work for Gender Equality

Trans Rights, Recognition and Self-Determination

Sex Work


Stay updated with IWDA’s work to progress systemic change

By completing this form you consent to receiving advocacy, appeal and newsletter updates from IWDA. You may unsubscribe at any time. Please see our privacy policy for further information.