SIA director awarded research grant

SIA director Scott Sigmund Gartner
SIA director Scott Sigmund Gartner

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Professor Scott Sigmund Gartner, director of the Penn State School of International Affairs, received a research grant from Sweden’s Folke Bernadotte Academy to explore the role of gender in international dispute mediation.

More than a decade after United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 recognized the lack of women in international dispute mediation, there continues to be a poor understanding of the factors that limit participation.

Gartner’s study will employ an experimental method to explore whether the interaction of gender and dispute characteristics might negatively affect the selective employment of female mediators. It seeks to find if there is opposition against female mediators, especially lead mediators, in the costly and violent disputes most likely to experience third-party dispute mediation. If so, the involvement of women in low-hostility disputes may not serve as a path forward to their greater inclusiveness. Instead, increasing the number of female mediators in leadership roles may require a fundamental shift in norms regarding third-party mediators.

The funding from the Folke Bernadotte Academy will support School of International Affairs graduate student participation in this research study.