WIIS was initially founded in the United States in 1987 by a small group of women in governmental and academic positions as a response to the lack of support women received in the male dominated foreign and defense policy circles. WIIS Italy is part of a global network which today has 35 antennas and more than 7,000 members worldwide. WIIS Italy was born in April 2016 and is managed by a group of volunteers, who work toward the goal of promoting the mission of WIIS through organizing of events, debates and seminars on issues related to women, international peace, and security.
Since its creation in 2016, the association has grown to expand its network of contacts and has launched important initiatives such as the creation of the Network of Mediterranean Women Mediators, an initiative promoted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, in partnership with IAI; the meeting on “Women, Peace and Security” organized in the Chamber of Deputies in collaboration with the Canadian Embassy on the occasion of Women’s Day on 8 March 2019; and the seminar “Women in NATO” organized at Villa Wolkonsky in June 2019. WIIS Italy has also hosted numerous informal moments, such as the study trip to NATO, debates organized with the diplomatic representatives in Rome and networking aperitifs.
In 2020, the association wants to expand its activities conducting a series of events focusing on the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on “Women, Peace and Security” in occasion of its 20th anniversary, launching a mentoring programme, female leadership courses, hosting new events in collaboration with other European organizations that share similar objectives (such as The Brussels Binder), and enhancing the blog with new content.