DOES COMMITMENT LEAD TO ACTIONS? The Impact of Feminist Foreign Policy on Aid Allocation and Female Ambassadorship

University essay from Göteborgs universitet/Statsvetenskapliga institutionen

Author: Emma Olsson; [2023-10-30]

Keywords: ;

Abstract: Since 2014, ten states have declared their intent to pursue a Feminist Foreign Policy, and by doing so, made a commitment to bettering women’s rights around the world. The aim of this Master Thesis is to evaluate if the adoption of Feminist Foreign Policy is followed up with tangible impact on women at home as well as abroad. The impact of Feminist Foreign Policy is examined by analysing two measurable domains of foreign policy: gender equality aid allocation and female diplomatic representation. To achieve this aim, I review the previous academic literature, formulate theoretical expectations and conduct a time series analysis covering 29 countries between the years 2013 to 2021. The literature review shows that there is no consensus as to why states adopt FFP, and that studies on FFP implementation are missing. The theory section concludes that states are expected to follow their commitments with actions due to democratic scrutiny, cosmopolitanism and post-colonialism, but not if the adoption is being used as disingenuous nation branding, in cases of low domestic accountability, and as a result of implementation difficulties. The empirical analysis shows that adopting a Feminist Foreign Policy may result in higher aid allocation towards gender equality projects. On the other hand, the declaration of a Feminist Foreign Policy has no discernible effect on the share of women in ambassadorial positions.

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