Italy adopted its fourth National Action Plan (NAP) in 2020 for the period 2020-2024. Analysis is forthcoming.
Its third NAP was adopted in 2016 for the period 2016-2019. The NAP was developed by the Inter-Ministerial Committee for Human Rights (CIDU) with the input of a variety of stakeholders, including civil society. The NAP approaches the implementation of the Women, Peace, and Security (WPS) agenda both domestically and internationally, with indicators focused on strengthening the implementation of the Women, Peace and Security Agenda (WPS) both inside the country, as well as in conflict and post-conflict situations. The NAP identifies seven overarching objectives, including increasing women’s participation in peacebuilding and decision-making processes and promoting gender-sensitive peace operations. Each objective has corresponding actions and indicators, but the NAP does not have an allocated budget.
Previous NAPs were adopted in 2010 and 2014, and implemented for the period 2010-2013 and 2014-2016, respectively. Italy’s first three NAPs identify the following among their primary goals: increasing the number of women in the military; promoting a gender perspective in peace operations, including training on Resolution 1325; protecting the rights of women, children, and vulnerable groups in conflict and post-conflict zones; strengthening the role of women in peace processes; and increasing civil society participation in implementing Resolution 1325. The NAPs approach the implementation of the WPS agenda both domestically and internationally, with preventing human trafficking and protecting refugees and asylum seekers as major areas of concern at the domestic level.
Italy does not have a history of recent armed conflict, but is a contributor to peacekeeping and military operations. In 2019, Italy was also among the top 10 arms exporters in the world. Specifically, between 2015 and 2018, Italy made more than 700 million in euros through arms exports to Saudi Arabia. The Italian government stopped arms exports to Saudia Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, as a result of concerted civil society efforts that exposed the human rights violations during the war in Yemen.
In 2019, Italy adopted a new law with extended measures to prevent gender-based violence. Despite this positive development for human rights, rights violations continue for migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers, including through anti-immigration policies and rhetoric.
At the multilateral level, Italy most recently served as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for a one-year term in 2017, splitting the ordinarily two-year term with the Netherlands due to a deadlocked election result.
Global Gender Gap Index 2020
76 out of 153
Arms Trade Treaty Ratified
Military expenditure (2019)
$26.7 billion USD
Explore Italy's National Action Plan
The development of Italy’s NAP was inclusive, participatory and included input from civil society organisations. Numerous meetings were held involving relevant stakeholders, including CSOs, academia, NGOs and other relevant institutional actors.
WILPF Italy did not participated in the development process of the third NAP.
The present Plan has been elaborated on the basis of the following principles: transparency, dialogue and a multi-stakeholder approach. To this end, a national open-ended (inter-ministerial and participatory) Working Group (OEWG) on WPS has been established and will be led by the Inter-ministerial Committee for Human Rights (CIDU).
Civil society organisations will be present in the process of NAP implementation. Progress reporting will be conducted with relevant civil society groups in order to guarantee operational effectiveness and a more holistic and synergetic approach.
Given the importance of this Plan, Italy is committed to implementing it through a close collaboration between the above-mentioned Working Group, civil society and the most relevant actors, in a multi-stakeholder fashion. This multi-stakeholder mechanism will oversee the implementation of the current NAP with progress reports conducted with relevant CSOs in order to guarantee operational effectiveness.
NAP Monitoring and Evaluation
The open-ended Working Group (OEWG) will be responsible of the monitoring of this Plan. To this end, it will establish a permanent coordination mechanism with CSOs and other relevant actors. The OEWG will meet at least every four months, and will provide information to the members of the CIDU. The OEWG will revise existing Goals, commitments, actions, indicators, the EU comprehensive approach, emerging issues, and policy agendas relating to WPS as identified under the monitoring process annually in light of lessons learned.
The open-ended Working Group (OEWG) will be also responsible for the application and monitoring of this Plan. The OEWG will meet at least every four months and will provide information to the members of the CIDU. The OEWG will revise existing Goals, commitments, actions, indicators, the EU comprehensive approach, emerging issues, and policy agendas relating to WPS as identified under the monitoring process annually in light of lessons learned.
The implementation period for the National Plan of Action is three years (2016-2019).
The Italian NAP’s primary objectives are focused on Seven Goals:
- Strengthen the role of women in peace processes and in all decision-making processes;
- Continue promoting a gender perspective in peace operations;
- Continue ensuring specific training on the various and cross-cutting aspects of UNSCR 1325 (2000), in particular to personnel taking part in peace operations;
- Further enhance women’s presence in the national Armed Forces and within national Police forces by strengthening their role in decision-making processes related to peace missions;
- Protect human rights of women and girls in conflict and post-conflict areas;
- Increase synergies with civil society to implement UNSCR 1325 (2000);
- Strengthen strategic communication and result-oriented advocacy
Each area of work has different actions assigned. For example, Goal 1 (Strengthening the role of women in peace processes and in all decision-making processes) includes the following actions:
- Continue promoting women’s participation in decision-making processes, including in international policy development;
- Continue building the capacity of women and their CSO groups to engage in prevention and response efforts for national peace processes and reconstruction;
- Create a Network of women mediators from the Mediterranean area and organise events to promote the Network and its members, within the framework of the Italian membership of the UN Security Council and of the Italian Presidency of the G7;
- Continue building the capacity of women and their CSO groups to engage in prevention and response efforts for representation and participation at the senior decision-making and leadership roles, especially in sectors such as DDR, electoral processes, justice and finance;
- Support local young women’s and men’s participation, also for sustainable peace;
- Promote information-sharing and learning from relevant women’s experience to highlight their transformative role.
Each strategic objective has a number of listed indicators. For example, the first objective of Goal 1, “Continue promoting women’s participation in decision-making processes, including in international policy development”, has two indicators: 1. Number of projects in/ for peace operations, fragile states and conflict-affected areas that integrate the participation and involvement of women or work with key stakeholders; 2. Percentage of women in executive-level roles in relevant Government of Italy administrations and departments.
The open-ended Working Group (OEWG) will be also responsible for the monitoring of this Plan, including application and monitoring. The OEWG will meet at least every four months and will provide information to the members of the CIDU. The OEWG will revise existing Goals, commitments, actions, indicators, the EU comprehensive approach, emerging issues, and policy agendas relating to WPS as identified under the monitoring process annually in light of lessons learned.
The third Italian NAP does not allocate a dedicated budget for each objective or action point. The NAP only notes that there are several Government-funded projects in/for peace operations, fragile states and conflict situations that integrate the needs and capacities of women and girls.
Italy's NAP did not include the need to strengthen disarmament efforts and the impact of arms on women.