Dissertations and Theses

Date of Award


Document Type



International Relations


United Nations, Women, Caribbean


"International conferences, especially UN-sponsored summits, are popular venues for political coalition around various issues of global concerns, mobilizing large audiences consisting of state representatives, NGO groups and other interested parties. Many small states participate at leading international summits. Some of these states for many obvious reasons are preoccupied with economic survival. Their limited resources are expended on economic priorities and little or none is left for the implementation of social development programs. As a result, these small states are constrained from defining contours of social development, without the cooperation of the international community. They must therefore depend on external actors for the successful implementation of development initiatives. This study will examine the role that the United Nations has played in influencing the gender mainstreaming process in accordance with the Beijing Platform for Action. In 1995, the United Nations convened in Beijing for its Fourth World Conference on Women, (hereinafter referred to as the FWCW). At this historic event, international heads voted on numerous resolutions for the establishment of strategies for the advancement and empowerment of women with a view to improving equality between men and women. The Platform for Action would eventually be implemented in the national reform policies pertaining to gender, development and status of women. At the dawn of the new millennium during the Beijing +5 Conference, the world heads again convened to assess compliance with the implementation of the provisions of the Beijing Platform for Action. In another decade the Beijing +10 meeting convened as a follow up mechanism of the groundbreaking 3 conference held ten years earlier. This study is positioned in the aftermath of these world conferences. It sets out to examine the contribution of UN-sponsored international conferences on women, analyzing their outcome by examining the development and implementation policies of states that attended these conferences. The purpose of this research is to fully illuminate the extent to which small states are successful in the implementation of global accords and the role that international conferences play in the process."



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