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International Center for Research on Women

ICRW is working to shape the U.S.’ role in creating a more feminist future.


The Policy and Advocacy team at the International Center for Research on Women conducts thought leadership, policy analysis, and coalition advocacy on feminist foreign policy, sexual and reproductive health and rights, women’s economic equality, and the women, peace, and security agenda.

We first funded ICRW as part of the Women, Peace, and Security Initiative. The ICRW Policy and Advocacy team bridged the worlds of research and progressive advocacy, and played a crucial role in moving forward the cause of gender equity in foreign policy before and after the passage of the Women, Peace, and Security Act of 2017.

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Learn more about the Compton Foundation’s other grantmaking to reimagine a foreign policy that centers gender justice and human security through the Women, Peace, and Security Initiative.

Read about the WPS Initiative

After the WPS Act became law, the team turned their attention toward what the next, more transformative set of policies might be possible to advance. As Sweden, France, Mexico, and Canada had announced “feminist foreign policies” (FFP), they identified an opportunity to interrogate what that meant, and to distill a global framework for FFP that could be adapted to the U.S. context, from investment in peacebuilding to climate change responses. The way in which the ICRW team took on this challenge is a great example of the importance of investing in networks and relationships in order to advance an ambitious body of work.

In 2019, ICRW convened 18 global feminist advocates and foreign policy experts from those governments that had penned FFPs at the Rockefeller Foundation’s property in Bellagio, Italy to distill a global framework for feminist foreign policy that could ultimately be adapted for the U.S. The retreat was facilitated by Compton Foundation Executive Director Ellen Friedman. ICRW then fleshed out that initial draft through months of consultations with more than two hundred feminist activists around the world, including a series of consultations on what a U.S.-specific FFP would look like. The resulting publication charted out an ambitious framework for a feminist foreign policy that has already influenced U.S. policy. In the time since, the Coalition for Feminist Foreign Policy has continued to advance this work in the U.S. and around the world through research, government advising, and outside advocacy.

Recent grant history

YearProjectGrant Award
2020General Support, ICRW Advocacy Team$225,000 over 3 years
2019General Support, ICRW Advocacy Team$50,000
2018Women, Peace, and Security Act implementation efforts$20,000
2018General Support, ICRW Advocacy Team$75,000
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