iKNOW Politics’ third E-discussion, focusing on financing women in politics, will run until October 29. Through this virtual conversation, women and their supporters can share strategies, experiences and examples on how to overcome the barriers that women face when trying to finance bids for elective office as well as take advantage of www.iknowpolitics.org, the premier online network for women in politics.
Frequently under-represented in business and commerce, women often do not have access to the same corporate and business networks that men use to raise money. In some countries women lack basic rights to own property, earn disproportionately lower incomes and have less financial independence than men. Women are also often kept outside existing party establishments and do not have access to their professional fundraisers and political networks. In addition, women often lack fundraising skills and experience, making them reluctant to aggressively ask for money. In many countries there have been efforts to address this inequality, including skills development and targeted fundraising campaigns in support of women candidates, as well as reforms to political financing laws. Meanwhile, women are increasingly finding new and innovative ways to raise money.
The E-discussion is focusing on:
- fundraising strategies for women candidates;
- finance laws for women’s political participation;
- the role of political parties in removing financial barriers to women in politics;
- women’s financial independence and access to public office; and
- women’s participation in local governments and local elections.
Its goal is to create a set of recommendations for future action. Contributions can be made in English, French or Spanish. The iKNOW Politics website has detailed descriptions and instructions on how to register and participate.
iKNOW Politics’ E-discussions are designed to engage members and experts, as well as women leaders and their supporters around the world, in a virtual dialogue on issues essential to the advancement of women in politics. The forums, moderated by the iKNOW Politics team, aim to generate knowledge on a global level.
iKNOW Politics was launched in February 2007 as a project of five international organizations: NDI, the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA), the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM). The online portal provides information, shared knowledge and networking opportunities for women in politics. Since its launch, iKNOW Politics has established an active online community with 3,300 registered members and over 100 experts from 28 countries. The site has received over 25 million hits, and continues to receive close to 100,000 hits daily.