The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) continues to be a dangerous place for women and girls due to ongoing gender-based violence. This policy brief examines the obstacles to achieving United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16 to promote "peace, justice and strong institutions" in the DRC and reduce all forms of violence. Criminal justice reforms in North Kivu, DRC, such as the implementation of the Law on Sexual Violence, have struggled because of their top-down approach that excludes local governance structures and customary chiefs in the management of local conflicts. In order to fulfill SDG 16 targets, women need to play a central role, along with local customary structures, in improving their access to justice and participation within local institutions.

Part of Series

In this series by emerging scholars, policy briefs address opportunities for international and domestic law, economics and policy to contribute toward achieving sustainable development across sectors. The policy briefs are therefore tailored to global economies and policy-oriented solutions in one or more of the ILRP’s core research areas of international intellectual property law, international environmental law, international economic law and international Indigenous law. The idea is to address aspects of CIGI’s research areas through the lens of international law, economics and policy, governance and sustainable development in a public policy format.
  • Évelyne Jean-Bouchard is a researcher specializing in feminist legal anthropology. She is currently a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council postdoctoral fellow at the Centre de recherche en droit public at the University of Montreal.