This project explored barriers to women’s political leadership in Tanintharyi region, Dawei, Myanmar, and made recommendations to improve the situation and thereby contribute to more inclusive democracy. Using a mixed-methods approach, the team examined the factors that help and hinder women in their bid to become parliamentarians and political leaders; how they are perceived in the male-dominated political domain; and what can be done to further develop women’s political participation.
A three-day research preparation workshop enabled the team to work collaboratively to formulate research concepts, design survey questionnaires, and conduct and reflect on the success of pilot interviews. Nu Nu Hlaing, who led the project, explained why the workshop was so vital: “Civil society organisations in Myanmar are used to conducting projects on behalf of international funders and organisations. Being given the opportunity to conceive, design, and implement our own research project for the first time – to take ownership of it – was fantastic. We were able to strengthen our own organisational research design capacity, and it’s something we can confidently take forward in our future work, to lead our own research.”