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International Initiative and Domestic Reforms: European Union Efforts to Combat Violence against Women

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  03 September 2009

Celeste Montoya
Affiliation:
University of Colorado, Boulder

Abstract

Since the 1990s, many countries have adopted policies aimed at combating violence against women; however, despite widespread policy adoption, actual reform has been uneven at best. In this article, I analyze the role played by international organizations and transnational networks in promoting women's human rights. In the first section, I examine the different mechanisms by which states adopt new policies and the implications they have on prospects for implementation. I propose a new model, the umbrella pattern, that accounts for the decoupling of policy and practice caused by states with limited local capacity. In addition, I argue that international organizations can improve the prospects for domestic implementation by engaging in capacity-building strategies, such as resource distribution and the facilitation of transnational networks. In the second section, I present an empirical study of the European Union and its efforts to address violence against women. In regards to policy adoption, I evaluate its efforts at policy promotion and then provide a comparative and aggregate analysis of policy adoption in member and candidate states. To address EU capacity-building efforts, I focus on one particular initiative, the Daphne project, which is the EU's primary mechanism for addressing gender violence.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © The Women and Politics Research Section of the American Political Science Association 2009

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