Principles and objectives

Guiding Principles

We the organizers, presenters, and participants of Women's Worlds 2011 will be guided by these principles in our work, actions, and standards.

Our 9 Guiding Principles shall:

  • govern the development of conference content as well as representation (at both structural and participatory levels)
  • inform all aspects of conference planning, implementation, and promotion
  • help answer internal and external questions about conference objectives, participation, and outcomes

Philosophy

1. Diversity and accessibility are central to everything we do and stand for, and will be espoused by striving to make this event reachable and relevant to marginalized women.

2. The notion of transformational leadership/change will influence the development of content and call for participation in both stated and underlying ways.

3. Feminists and advocates for women’s equality work in different ways that must be celebrated and accommodated in terms of presentations, participation, and otherwise.

4. We will encourage the defining and re-defining of feminism(s) and will welcome equality seekers who don’t identify as feminists.

5. Layers of colonialism and patriarchy unite us in a common purpose. We won’t shy away from naming this, even while we may be divided on other grounds.

Approach

WE WILL …

6. Promote safe spaces through an environment in which participants feel free to be themselves, to express freely, and to respectfully challenge one another without repercussion.

7. Strive to integrate – not tokenize or ghettoize – inter-generational issues and dialogues/issues related to marginalized women and communities.

8. Interweave the WW theme throughout all components of the conference, along with questions of diversity/inclusion/representation.

9. Inspire the birth of new ideas, goals, and sustainable connections (local, national, international) and focus on solutions and successes as much as challenges and resistance.

FINAL version approved by Steering Committee 26 June 09

Objectives

WW 2011 is an opportunity for feminists and allies from around the globe to discuss globalization as it relates to women, strengthen connections, and collaborate on approaches to advancing women’s rights, women’s empowerment, and gender equality.

To achieve this, we will strive to:


Connect

1. Combine knowledge and practice – We will facilitate discussion of the latest in analysis and approaches to women’s equality – from around the world, from both academic and community-based participants, from a rich variety of perspectives – by highlighting innovative and successful projects, actions, and by highlighting women’s experiences.

2. Foster linkages across constituencies – We will encourage the development of existing networks and the formation of new ones by bringing together a vibrant cross-section of participants, by organizing discussions innovatively, and by creating opportunities for participants to gather in both formal and informal ways.

3. Embrace diversity – We will encourage the kind of rich and innovative conversation that can emerge when everyone has the chance to meaningfully participate – especially those too often underrepresented – by ensuring diversity among and accessibility for participants and presenters.

Converse

4. Celebrate and foster transformational leadership and change – We will promote the sharing of strategies for action, empowerment, and revolution.

5. Build bridges – We will facilitate the respectful exchange of ideas and experiences between generations, races, cultures, ethnicities, (dis)abilities, sexualities, geographies, and other ways we may differ, with the goal of strengthening feminist movements internationally and in Canada.

6. Influence discourse – We will attempt to influence public and political discourse on matters pertaining to women’s equality internationally and in Canada.

7. Practice ecological sustainability – We will endeavour to produce an event that is as environmentally responsible as possible.

These objectives will shape our efforts and accordingly, provide the basis for an evaluation of our successes.

(order does not imply prioritization)