Women PeaceMakers Conference: Defying Extremism

Event Start DateWednesday, November 19, 2014 – Friday, November 21, 2014
Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice Theatre

Defying Extremism: Gendered Responses to Religious Violence Design

The rise of violent religious extremism and its impact on women and communities worldwide is an urgent and deepening crisis. From Nov. 19-21, the IPJ will convene its 10th international working conference to examine the issue and gendered strategies to confront this disturbing trend.

Responding to a call from its Women PeaceMakers network, the IPJ and its partners will bring together local and international policymakers, religious leaders, security forces and peacebuilders to discuss the support and interventions needed to defend human rights in contexts where extremist voices in religious communities call for violence, rather than tolerance and peace.

In particular, the conference will focus on the ways in which women and women’s rights are often the first to be targeted by violent religious extremism, and what strategies women and their allies are using to combat the polarization of their communities, assert their rights, and create the space for moderate and/or interfaith dialogue to establish peace.

Conference information: Please contact Conference Coordinator Iveta Niederle at iveta.niederle@gmail.com for information about the conference and any application/registration questions.

Sponsorship information: Please contact Diana Kutlow at dkutlow@sandiego.edu

Message Remainder

Nov. 19

Subject to Change

Wednesday, November 19
9 a.m. Registration
10 a.m. Welcome and Opening Statements
10:30 a.m. Testimonials
Rubina Feroze Bhatti
General Secretary - Taangh Wasaib Organization, Pakistan
2009 IPJ Woman PeaceMaker
Loreto Cabaya
Mayor - Aleosan, Mindanao, Philippines
Ameena Saeed Hasan
Representative of Yazidi Community, Iraq
Vicky Ibrahim
SAVE Network, Women Without Borders
Mother of Andrew Ibrahim, accused of plotting to bomb the Bristol shopping center, U.K.
Margaret Arach Orech
Commissioner - Interfaith Action for Peace in Africa
2014 IPJ Woman PeaceMaker
Shreen Abdul Saroor
Founder - Mannar Women's Development Federation, Sri Lankaa
2004 IPJ Woman PeaceMaker
11:30 a.m. Lunch
1 p.m. PANEL - ANALYSIS: Realities Behind the Headlines
Yakın Ertürk
Former U.N. Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women
Mohamed Elsanousi
Director of External Relations - Network of Religious and Traditional Peacemakers
Shareen Gokal
Manager, Resisting and Challenging Religious Fundamentalisms - Association of Women's Rights in Development
Susan Hayward
Senior Program Officer, Religion and Peacemaking - U.S. Institute of Peace
Madeline Koch
Program Officer - International Civil Society Action Network
3 p.m. Working Sessions
Comparisons in Violence, Strategies for Hope: Sri Lanka and Burma
Facilitators: Shreen Abdul Saroor, Visakha Tillekeratne
Forum Outcomes - Extremism as Mainstream: Implications for Women, Development and Security in the MENA/Asia Region
Facilitator: Madeline Koch — International Civil Society Action Network
Links Between Militarization and Extremism
Facilitator: Sameena Nazir - Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Pakistan
Susan Hayward
Senior Program Officer, Religion and Peacemaking - U.S. Institute of Peace
5 p.m. PANEL - DIALOGUES: Talking with Extremists
Speakers to be confirmed
6:30 p.m. Dinner

Nov. 20

Subject to Change

Thursday, November 20
8 a.m. Registration
9 a.m. Co-Conveners Welcome and Overview of Day
9:30 a.m. Testimonials
Sister Pauline Acayo
Peacebuilding Project Officer - Catholic Relief Services, Uganda
2005 IPJ Woman PeaceMaker
Rehana Hashmi
Co-founder - Sisters Trust Pakistan
2013 IPJ Woman PeaceMaker
10 a.m. PANEL - GENDER INITIATIVES: Defending Rights, Defying Extremism
Edit Schlaffer
Founder and Executive Director - Women Without Borders
Jamila Afghani
Managing Director - Noor Educational and Capacity Development Organization, Afghanistan
Hauwa Ibrahim
Visiting Lecturer in Women's Rights and Islamic Law - Harvard Divinity School
William Vendley (Invited)
Secretary General - Religions for Peace International
12 p.m. Working Sessions
Identifying Radicalization: Early Warning and Intervention
Facilitators: Vicky Ibrahim, Edit Schlaffer - Women Without Borders
From Radicalization to Reconciliation
Facilitator: Robi Damelin - 2014 Woman PeaceMaker
Links Between Militarization and Extremism
Facilitator: Sameena Nazir - Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Pakistan
Development of the Network of Religious and Traditional Peacemakers
Facilitators: Hannele Hartto, Dr. Rev. Petri Merenlahti - Finn Church Aid, Secretariat of the Network of Religious and Traditional Peacemakers
1:30 p.m. Lunch
2:30 p.m. PANEL THREE - BUILDING EFFECTIVE POLICIES: Frameworks, Collaboration and Action
Lina Abou-Habib
Executive Director - Collective for Research and Training on Development-Action
Program Advisor - Women's Learning Partnership
Speakers (listed alphabetically)
Alison Davidian
Justice Specialist - UN Women
Joyce Dubensky
CEO - Tanenbaum
Sabiha Husic
Director - Medica Zenica
2013 IPJ Woman PeaceMaker
Palwasha Kakar (Invited)
Senior Program Officer, Religion and Peacebuilding - U.S. Institute of Peace
4:30 p.m. Working Sessions
Fostering Synergies for Advancing Women's Rights in Post-Conflict Islamic States: Three Pillars Approach
Facilitator: Susan Hayward - U.S. Institute of Peace
Women Preventing Violent Extremism: Nigeria and Kenya
Facilitator: To be confirmed
Challenging Religious Fundamentalisms
Facilitator: Shareen Gokal - Association of Women's Rights in Development
Unpacking the Truth: Religious Liberty, Women's Rights and Radicalization
Facilitator: Christy Vines - Institute for Global Engagement
Gender-sensitive funding for CVE
Facilitator: To be confirmed
Started from My Living Room: Community-based Models for Anti-radicalization and Reformation
Facilitators: Paula Kweskin — "Honor Diaries"
Raheel Raza — Council for Muslims Facing Tomorrow
Jasvinder Singh — Karma Nirvana
6 p.m. Private Reception
7 p.m. Distinguished Lecture Series
Karima Bennoune
Professor of International Law - University of California at Davis
Author - Your Fatwa Does Not Apply Here
8:30 p.m. Dessert Reception

Nov. 21

Subject to Change

Friday, November 21
8 a.m. Continental Breakfast and Networking
9 a.m. Overview of Day
9:30 a.m. Testimonials (TBD)
10 a.m. Closing Keynote Address
James McElroy
Member, Board of Directors - Southern Poverty Law Center
Civil Rights Attorney
11 a.m. Conference Closing
1 p.m. Regional Dialogue Sessions
Open to confereence delegates

Europe/North America
Middle East/North Africa


Attendance at this conference is by application. We review every application in an effort to ensure that attendees are active professionals engaged in fields related to the topic. Please note that there will also be opportunities for the public to hear conference speakers and meet delegates during two open forums. These will be posted in the conference agenda, coming shortly. If your application is approved, you will be notified by email with registration instructions.

Registration includes all meals, conference materials, reports and processing fees, per person.

Registration TypeCost
Conference Registration: $325
Conference Registration NGO: $195
Conference Registration Student (valid student ID must be presented at registration): $175
One day rate (can only be purchased for Wednesday, Thursday OR Friday): $125


The IPJ has arranged for a special conference rate through The Dana on Mission Bay. Shuttles will be arranged to and from the conference venue each morning and evening.

Reservations - The Dana on Mission Bay

Reservation Phone #
(mention the USD/IPJ conference, or "Defying Extremism"):


The IPJ gratefully acknowledges the support of the following sponsors of "Defying Extremism"

Gold Sponsor
Arsenault Family Foundation

Bronze Sponsor
Voices of Women

Special Event Sponsor
Rowe Family Foundation




Peace Advocate
Jeffrey and Linda Church
Dr. Thérèse Collins and Byron Georgiou

IPJ Leadership Circle
Dr. Rosemary George-Straley
Anne Hoiberg
Mary Scherr


Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice  Association for Women's Rights in Development NGO Working Group on Women, Peace, and Security Tanenbaum, Combating Religious Prejudice UN Women, Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women Women Without Borders, Change the World Women's Learning Partnership, for Rights, Development, and Peace

* Also co-convened by The Network of Religious and Traditional Peacemakers

ContactJoan B. Kroc Institute For Peace and Justice | ipj@sandiego.edu | (619) 260-7509
Web Addresswww.sandiego.edu/peacestudies/institutes/ipj/programs/women-peacemakers/conferences.php