Annual Conference 1998: Transformation through Research, Action, and Knowledge

Thursday, October 1, 1998 - Sunday, October 4, 1998

Transformation through Research, Action, and Knowledge
October 1 - 4, 1998
Grand Hyatt Hotel, Washington DC




Keynote Speaker: Lani Guinier


The National Council for Research on Women is grateful to the following foundations for their support:
The Ford Foundation (Core Support)
Rockefeller Foundation and Open Society Institute (Global Exchange Initiative)
National Science Foundation and Alfred P. Sloan Foundation (Science Panels)
The Ms. Foundation for Women ("Fourth Wave" Panel)
The American Express Foundation and the Levi Strauss Foundation (Microenterprise Panels)

In the belief that we can create a more equitable and just world, the women's movement has, over the past thirty years, addressed key issues affecting the human condition globally and locally. Feminists have spearheaded new analyses and brought a gender lens to a variety of issues -- education, human rights, reproductive rights, poverty, violence, economic justice, and globalization -- transforming the ways in which these issues are viewed, and action and policies are strategized.

What kinds of transformations in research, action, and knowledge have taken place over the past thirty years? What areas need more work, and, given the vast social, cultural, economic, and political changes world-wide, what areas need new emphases? NCRW will raise these questions at the 1998 Annual Conference, focusing the lens on women's leadership; issues in the healthy development of girls; women's and girls' experiences in the sciences, math, and engineering; economic efforts to achieve gender equity and justice; and new frontiers in feminist research. Throughout, the Conference will draw upon cross-cultural, cross-national, and intergenerational perspectives.

Program Highlights include a keynote luncheon talk by Lani Guinier on gender equity issues, NCRW's First Annual Award Dinner for Women Leaders Who Make A Difference, and a panel of young researchers and activists -- the "Fourth Wave" -- who will discuss the experiences and conditions that affect their perspectives and the research questions and activist strategies that guide their work. Panelists will include representatives of NCRW member centers and specialists from a variety of local and global arenas.


Thursday, October 1
11:00 am-5:00 pm Board Meeting (Latrobe/Bulfinch)
5:30-7:30 pm

Opening Reception, The Capitol

Welcome, Shari Miles (Executive Director, Women's Research and Education Institute)

Chaired by United States Representatives Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) and Sue Kelly (R-NY)

8:30 pmNCRW Board Development Committee Meeting
Friday, October 2
7:30-8:45 am Breakfast and Registration
8:45-9:00 am Welcome, Donna Shavlik (NCRW Board Chair) and Linda Basch (Executive Director, NCRW)
9:00-10:30 am


Transforming Political and Social Institutions Globally and Locally: New Visions and Strategies of Leadership

Over the past 25 years, women have had access to key decision-making and leadership positions, often with the expectation that they will serve as effective change agents. How do these gains by women affect actual relations of power, and in what social and political contexts? What leadership strategies by women have been most effective in leading to change? To what extent are accountability to a broad social base and strategic alliances with other progressive movements important ingredients of change efforts? And how can fundamental change be assessed? Women located in a variety of global and local contexts will discuss these issues.

Participants: Peggy Antrobus (DAWN); Jan Piercy (U.S. Executive Director, World Bank); Ruth Meena (Professor of Political Science, University of Dar Es Salaam)

Moderator: Yolanda Moses (President, City College of New York)

Discussants: Hester Eisenstein (Director, Women's Studies Program, Queens College; Professor, Graduate Center, City University of New York); Rosina Wiltshire (Manager, Gender in Development Programme, UNDP)

10:30-11:00 am Coffee Break
11:00-12:45 pm

CONCURRENT PANELS: Transforming Research to Action

  • Transforming the Equation in Science and Technology: The Case for Women and Girls

    By drawing on research and practical hands-on projects for women and girls, this session will identify the kinds of policies and projects that have proven successful in attracting women and girls to science and technology, and ensuring that they have a fair chance of thriving once there. Where can we see progress and what are the continuing barriers to full inclusion?

    Chair: Carol Hollenshead (Director, Center for the Education of Women, University of Michigan)

    Participants: Angela Ginorio (Director, Northwest Center for Research on Women, University of Washington), Sue Rosser (Director, Center for Women's Studies and Gender Research, University of Florida), Cecily Cannan Selby (Scientist, Director, Educator), Carol Burger (Coordinator, Science and Gender Equity Program, Virginia Polytechnic Institute)


  • The Girl-Child in Global and National Contexts: Research, Policy and Advocacy Issues

    The 1990s have witnessed a proliferation of research and programs on adolescent girls domestically and internationally. Researchers and activists working in the U.S. and with global organizations will identify key research issues being addressed, and programmatic and policy strategies for advancing the situations of girls world-wide. Attention will also be given to ways girls have been involved in research methodologies and activist initiatives.

    Moderator: Leslie Calman (NOW, LDEF)

    Participants: Geeta Rao Gupta (President, International Center for Research on Women), Lynn Phillips (Author Girl's Report, Eugene Lang College, New School University); Leslie Wolfe (President, Center for Women's Policy Studies); Penina Mlama (Deputy Vice Chancellor, University of Dar es Salaam); Sara Friedman (UNICEF)


  • Economic Growth with Economic Justice: The Microenterprise Movement as a Means Toward Gender Equity Globally and Locally

    The microenterprise movement, both internationally and domestically, has been viewed as an important economic development strategy for achieving gender equity. Using feminist analyses, panelists will address the extent to which the microenterprise movement historically has fostered gender equity in different political and economic contexts, and for different sectors of the population. Case examples will illuminate policy and advocacy issues and research questions.

    Moderator: Kate Cloud (Director, Office of Women in International Development, University of Illinois at Urbana)

    Participants: Susan Davis (Board Director, Grameen Foundation); Rekha Mehra (ICRW); Anna Wadia (Ms. Foundation); Madeline Lamour (Senior Program Coordinator, Sister's Lending Circle, Central Brooklyn Federal Credit Union/Central Brooklyn Partnership)

1:00-2:30 pm

Lunch; Moderator: Demie Kurz (Alice Paul Center, University of Pennsylvania)


2:45-4:30 pm

CONCURRENT PANELS: Pushing Paradigms


  • Framing New Paradigms: Feminist Perspectives and the Sciences

    One of the burgeoning academic fields of investigation for feminist theory is feminist science studies. Three scholars who are shaping some of the intellectual questions posed in this emerging field will map the new terrain by focusing the challenges, both to the practice and boundaries of science, as well as to the practice and boundaries of Women's Studies.

    Chair: Caryn McTighe Musil (Vice President, Learning and Diversity Initiatives, American Association of Colleges and Universities)

    Participants: Donna Hughes (Carlson Endowed Chair; Director, Women's Studies Program, University of Rhode Island); Banu Subramaniam (Assistant Research Professor, Women's Studies, University of Arizona); Bonnie Shulman (Assistant Professor, Mathematics, Bates College)


  • Shaping New Policy and Research Directions for Adolescent Girls: Global, National, and Local Perspectives

    The attention focused on adolescent girls over the past decade and the achievements in placing girls' concerns on national and global policy and research agendas raise a number of challenges, opportunities, and questions as we approach the new millennium. Researchers, activists, and a funder will explore these matters. Particular attention will be given to where gaps exist in present knowledge; new research agendas emerging nationally and globally to advance the situations of girls; and ways innovative initiatives are and can be funded. Finally, where are the possibilities for international collaboration on behalf of girls?

    Chair: Heather Johnston-Nicholson (Director, National Resource Center, Girls Incorporated)

    Participants: Susan Bailey (Director, Center for Research on Women, Wellesley College);Pamela Haag (Research Fellow, AAUW); Joan French (UNICEF); Brigette Rouson (Senior Program Officer, Girls, Young Women, and Leadership, Ms. Foundation)

    Discussant: Alexis Moore (Journalist, Philadelphia Enquirer)


  • New Roads to Economic Security for Women: Issues of Research, Practice, and Policy

    A number of organizing strategies and public policy initiatives have given new shape to the microenterprise movement, as the economy has provided space for its expansion. Panelists will discuss the economic and political dimensions of these strategies, and the research and "nuts and bolts" practice and policy issues that need to be addressed. Considering the challenges and opportunities, what are the next steps that need to be considered and institutionalized?

    Moderator: Mary C. Mattis (Vice President, Research and Advisory Services, Catalyst)

    Panelists: Heidi Hartmann (Director, Institute for Women's Policy Research); Lisa Dodson (Fellow, Radcliffe Public Policy Intitute); Jeannine Jacokes (Community Development Financial Institutions Fund Transition Team, U.S. Department of Treasury); Anne Mosle (Director, Women's Policy and Programs, Center for Policy Alternatives)

4:30-4:45 pm Coffee Break
4:45-6:30 pm


Where is Feminism's "Fourth Wave"?

As we move into the fourth decade of the women's movement, how have research questions and activist strategies changed, and how are young researchers and activists framing questions and strategies? Panelists will discuss how new research is incorporating gendered analyses; how new knowledge produced informs action; in what ways and in what contexts organizing around gender is important; and the kinds of alliances and networks we now need to form?

Participants: Diana Wells, (PhD Candidate, Director of Fellowship Support Services at Ashoka); Martha Whitaker (PhD Candidate, SIROW); Sarah Boonin (Coordinator, Feminist Majority Leadership Alliances); Crystal Kile (Education Coordinator, Newcomb College Center for Research on Women, Tulane University); Nadia Moritz (Executive Director, The Young Women's Project); Yin Ling Leung (Executive Director, Asians and Pacific Islanders for Reproductive Health)

Moderator: Deborah Thomas (International Projects Coordinator, NCRW)

Respondents to Fourth Wave Roundtable: Joyce Gelb (Director, Women's Studies Program, The Graduate Center); Beverly Guy-Sheftall (Director, Women's Research and Resource Center, Spelman College)

7:00-7:30 pm Cash Bar Reception (Constitution C,D,E)
7:30-9:30 pm

Award Dinner and Entertainment

First Annual Award for Women Leaders Who Make a Difference

(To Donna Shavlik, Former Director, Office of Women in Higher Education, American Council on Education; Chair, NCRW Board)

Keynote Speaker: Alison Bernstein (Vice President, Education, Media, Arts, and Culture, Ford Foundation)

Saturday, October 3
7:00-9:00 am Breakfast
8:00-9:15 am NCRW Business Meeting: State of the Council
Donna Shavlik (Chair, NCRW Board), Linda Basch (Executive Director)
9:15-10:45 am


Help shape NCRW's research agenda! NCRW and its member centers strive to use research as a tool for effecting social change and action. What are the most pressing issues domestically and globally that need to be addressed as we approach the new millennium, and how do we shape research agendas that are both fundable and able to influence the public discourse?

Moderator: Linda Basch

Facilitators: Stanlie James (Director, Women's Studies Research Center, University of Wisconsin, Madison); Heather Johnston Nicholson; Abigail Stewart (Director, Institute for Research on Women and Gender, University of Michigan)

Roundtable Discussion Leaders: Electa Arenal (Director, Center for the Study of Women and Society, CUNY); Alice Dan (Director, Center for Research on Women and Gender, University of Illinois at Chicago); Carolyn Farrel (Director, Gannon Center for Women and Leadership, Loyola University Chicago); Cynthia Secor (Director, HERS Mid-America); Robin Sheets (Director, Center for Women's Studies, University of Cinncinnati); Irene Tinker (President, Equity Policy Center); Beth Willinger (Director, Newcomb College Center for Research on Women, Tulane University); Cynthia Deitch (Associate Director, Women's Studies Program, George Washington University); Vicky Semler (International Women's Tribune Center); Florence Howe (Publisher and Director, The Feminist Press); Mariam Chamberlain (Founding President, NCRW)

10:45-11:00 am Coffee Break
11:00-1:00 pm

Perspectives on Feminist Theory: Diversity and Transformation

This session will address the transformations in feminist theory and knowledge resulting from processes of globalization, post-colonialism, transnationalism, and development. Insights from the Women's Studies, Area and International Studies Curriculum Integration Project, such as ways to bridge different conceptual paradigms, will be incorporated. The format will be one presenter and two respondents.

Moderator: Janice Monk (Executive Director, SIROW)

Comments: Janice Petrovich (Education, Knowledge, and Religion, Ford Foundation)

Presenter: Chandra Talpade Mohanty (Associate Professor of Women's Studies, Hamilton College; Core Faculty, The Union Institute Graduate School) "Transforming Women's Studies Paradigms and Pedagogies: On the Politics and Ethics of Feminist Academic Practices"

Respondents: Sandra Morgen (Director, Center for the Study of Women in Society, University of Oregon); Barbara Ellen Smith (Director, Center for Research on Women, Memphis State University)

1:15-2:45 pm

Lunch: "Hands On Roundtables"

Participants will eat at tables organized around specific themes led by experts in the area: Judy Touchton (Office of Women in Higher Education, ACE), Issues in Higher Education Leadership; Carolyn Farrel, Archives; Alice Dan (Center for Research on Woman, University of Illinois, Chicago), Technology; Sue Kaufman (Center for the Education of Women, University of Michigan), Private Fundraising; Beth Willinger, Issues in University-based Research Centers; Florence Howe, Writing Africa Making and Keeping Gender an Agenda Item (Special Roundtable, Wilson/Roosevelt)

Organizers: Cynthia Secor (Director, HERS, Mid-America), Caryn McTighe Musil, Donna Shavlik (Senior Fellow, American Council on Education)

An exchange between U.S. and international researchers will focus on research agendas that emerge in different global contexts and identify areas for future collaboration. Special attention will also be directed to conditions and strategies that enable gender to become an agenda item in democratizing contexts.

Global Initiative Scholars: Biljana Kasic (Centre for Women's Studies, Zagreb); Ruth Meena (University of Dar es Salaam); Penina Mlama (Deputy Vice Chancellor, University of Dar es Salaam); Miglena Nikolchina (Program for Gender and Culture, Central European University in Budapest); Nomcebo Olive Simelane (Department of Geography, Environmental Science and Planning, University of Swaziland)

3:00-5:00 pm

Perspectives on Feminist Theory: NCRW as an Agent of Transformation (

This panel will explore what role NCRW can play in promoting interdisciplinary feminist research at this historic moment. The field of Women's Studies has expanded dramatically in the last 25 years: we have seen the internationalization of the curriculum; increased diversity of our student bodies; and the proliferation of graduate programs. Feminist scholars have introduced multiple, more inclusive perspectives to expand our notions of gender. Panel members will consider present needs in the U.S. for fora to present and disseminate feminist work, and the role that NCRW can play in meeting these needs. Should NCRW become a catalyst for advancing women's studies research, and if so, how?

Moderator: Demie Kurz (Co-Director, Alice Paul Center for the Study of Women, University of Pennsylvania)

Panelists: Beverly Guy-Sheftall; Sally Kitch (Chair, Women's Studies Department, Ohio State University); Kathy Rudy (Project Director, Women's Studies, Duke University); Elizabeth Weed (Associate Director, Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women, Brown University); Bonnie Zimmerman (President, National Women's Studies Association)

5:00-5:15 pm Coffee Break
5:15-6:30 pm

CLOSING PLENARY: Goals and Visions for the 21st Century

Shaping an Agenda for Feminist Research and Action

Facilitators/Moderators: Abigail Stewart; Heather Johnston Nicholson; Linda Basch

6:30-7:30 pm Cash Bar Reception
7:30 pm

Buffet Dinner showcasing the work of NCRW Member Centers


Annual Conference Program Committee

Co-Chairs: Demie Kurz, Co-Director, Alice Paul Center for the Study of Women, University of Pennsylvania;
Shari Miles, Executive Director, Women's Research and Education Institute
Leslie Calman, NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund; Kate Cloud, University of Illinois-Urbana; Susan Davis, Grameen Foundation; Hester Eisenstein, Queens College; Simel Esin, International Center for Research on Women; Geeta Rao Gupta, International Center for Research on Women; Carol Hollenshead, University of Michigan; Debra Humphreys, Association of American Colleges and Universities; Stanlie James, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Sally Kitch, Ohio State University; Janice Monk, University of Arizona; Sandra Morgen, University of Oregon; Anne Mosle, Center for Policy Alternatives; Caryn McTighe Musil, American Association of Colleges and Universities; Heather Johnston Nicholson, Girls Incorporated; Jean O'Barr, Duke University; Lynn Phillips, New School for Social Research; Kathy Rudy, Duke University; Cynthia Secor, HERS Mid-America; Donna Shavlik, American Council on Education; Anna Wadia, Ms. Foundation; Elizabeth Weed, Brown University


Associated Issues & Expertise: