Covid-19 to Climate Change: Gender, Peace and Security in the Asia-Pacific

Covid-19 to Climate Change: Gender, Peace and Security in the Asia-Pacific

Covid-19 to Climate Change: Gender, Peace and Security in the Asia-Pacific

24 May 2020

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Online Seminar

Covid-19 represents a massive global health, economic and political challenge. It is undoubtedly a gendered challenge too: women are the majority of healthcare workers internationally, take on more caregiving responsibilities, and are disproportionately represented in informal and precarious work. In displacement sites, women and girls face distinct risks due to protection gaps in sexual and gender-based violence and pre-existing weak health infrastructures. While Covid-19 is rapidly transforming the global security landscape, this seminar explores its gendered continuities and contingencies within the context of the Asia Pacific where crisis on multiple fronts have already been underway. In particular, the seminar brings together academics and practitioners seeking to examine how women and men navigate crises posed by the health pandemic alongside climate change, masculinised governance, and other gendered security threats in order to generate fruitful discussions for rethinking security in a new era.

This seminar is co-hosted by the Department of Pacific Affairs and the Department of International Relations in Coral Bell School of Asia Pacific Affairs.


Betty Barkha is a PhD Candidate with Monash University’s Centre for Gender, Peace and Security and an advisor for FRIDA Young Feminist Fund. Betty’s current research is focused on the gendered implications of climate change induced relocation and displacements in the Pacific.

Sharon Bhagwan-Rolls is a second generation Fiji Island feminist working on the intersection of gender, media, communications and peace. She advocates for an inclusive Peace, Development and Humanitarian nexus in policy and practice which she says requires a ‘redesigning of the decision making’. She is currently the Chairperson & Gender Liaison of the Board of Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC) and Technical Adviser of the Pacific regional Shifting the Power Coalition. Sharon was a member of the UN High Level Advisory Group for the Global Study on UNSCR1325 (2014-2015). Between 2010 & 2012 she coordinated civil society input into the development of the Pacific Regional Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security (2012-2015). She is also currently the co-chair of the Board of Directors of the Global Fund for Women.

Carla Silbert is Governance, Peace and Security Specialist for UN Women Regional Office in Asia and the Pacific, and the Officer-in-Charge of UN Women Philippines. Carla’s work focuses on women, peace and security, women’s access to justice, and the prevention of violent extremism.

Maria Tanyag is a Research Fellow/Lecturer in the Department of International Relations. Her current research interest is in exploring the Asia-Pacific region and the Philippines in particular to analyse multiple sites where conflicts, disasters, economic recessions, health epidemics and rising fundamentalisms increasingly constitute the overlapping gendered risks and hazards impacted by climate change.

Date and time

Tuesday 26 May 2020, 1.30PM–3.00PM

Register here.


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