Ateliers Genre(s) et Sexualité(s) "Feminist knowledge production and gender expertise 
in post-war context"

Le 31/05/2021

by Maria Martin de Almagro, Université de Montréal, MSH Guest Professor

Most discussions on knowledge production in peacebuilding and conflict management have focused on the study of epistemic communities and strategic coalitions of global and local actors. This presentation shifts the focus away from who produces knowledge to the underexplored question of how knowledge is generated, repackaged, deployed or ignored. Combining sociology of knowledge approaches with feminist governmentality scholarship, I critically interrogate the role of reports as knowledge production artefacts and report writing as bureaucratic practices that serve to design and implement UN Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) projects on Sustaining Peace. Specifically, I analyze the role of reports and reporting in four PBF projects on gender and reconciliation in Liberia, and I show how through the mechanisms of persuasion and homogenization, reports serve not only to measure success and failure and to produce contextualized knowledge, but also to exert symbolic power, (re)producing authoritative knowledge on women, gender and reconciliation and giving legitimacy to external interventions. Studying how knowledge is produced instead of who produces it enables us to apprehend the entanglement of the local and the global and overcome simplistic binaries and oppositions, all while paying attention to how the production of knowledge, and its silences, remains embedded in global power relations.

Maria Martin de Almagro is Assistant Professor in Gender and Politics at the Université de Montréal (Canada), member of the Centre for International Peace and Security Studies (CEPSI-CIPSS), and member of the Montreal Centre for International Studies (CERIUM). She is also member of the FBA Research Working Groups and Board Member and Academic Coordinator of Women in International Security – Canada. Furthermore, she is Associate Editor for the Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding and Co-Convener of the Gender and Politics Section of the Belgium Political Science Association. Her research focuses on gender politics, international security governance and the micro-dynamics of war-to-peace transitions (i.e. peacebuilding practices and transnational justice mechanisms) in Sub-Saharan Africa. Her primary empirical research interests focus on the United Nations Security Council’s Women, Peace and Security agenda.

Monday 31th May 2021, 5pm-7pm


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