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About GWLI

An Unequalled Mission

Women number half of the world’s population and are noticeably absent from top levels of leadership across public, private sector, and civil society. This global leadership deficit prevents a fuller understanding the essential points of view and distinctive vision that women can bring to the table and does not allow for effective processes to make transformative and impactful decisions. The Global Women’s Leadership Initiative (GWLI) at the Wilson Center is a unique platform for promoting enduring balance in leadership roles –equipping women with the skills and tools they need to lead, helping to build lasting mentorships between current and emerging leaders, raising the profile of critical issues across all sectors, and advancing inclusive policies and research. By offering training programs that are grounded in research, building networks, encouraging dialogue, and connecting women leaders in all sectors, GWLI strives to inspire and empower a new generation of women leaders.

Strengthening Women’s Voices

Effective innovation and social change is possible only when women have a seat at the table. The GWLI aims to ensure more and substantive women’s leadership and power, and has the credibility to bring together a diverse group of stakeholders on a shared platform. By convening, creating networks, and through training and research the GWLI can ensure that women are able to dialogue and participate in and transform processes designed to make decisions.

Pursuing Public Service

The Wilson Center’s Women in Public Service Project (WPSP) focuses on closing the gap in public service. The WPSP was founded by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2011 as a partnership between the State Department and five U.S. women’s colleges. It has grown to include 90 academic institutions, government entities, multilateral agencies, and private corporations worldwide. Through contextualized trainings and a network of trainers, two-way and peer mentoring, and catalyzing research, the WPSP focuses on advancing full and equal participation of women in all sectors of public service.

The WPSP has established a goal of 50 by 50: 50% of public service roles at all levels held by women by 2050. To date, the Women in Public Service project has trained nearly 1,000 emerging women leaders from every region of the world. WPSP institutes and programs have resulted in national action plans and policy recommendations presented to government ministries, constituent assemblies, and regional intergovernmental organizations, to ensure that women have a voice in public policy and decision-making.

Building Bridges to the Future

The Global Women’s Leadership Initiative seeks to build a generation of women leaders in public service, private enterprise, and civil society who provide leadership, invest in their countries and communities, and change the way global solutions are forged. Over the next several years, the GWLI seeks to scale up its impact by developing partnerships and collaborations throughout the world and sharing by its learning programs with emerging women leaders.