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The Women and Public Policy Program of Harvard Kennedy School works to advance women and gender equity by creating knowledge, training leaders, and informing public policy and organizational practices.

We envision a world in which everyone is able to define and fulfill their life aspirations unconstrained by gender bias.

We empower leaders and changemakers with rigorous, evidence-based research that advances women and gender equity.

Gender inequality is a systemic problem that impacts the welfare of families, the health of communities, and the potential of nations. At WAPPP, we engage policy makers, executives, and students to create new solutions for achieving gender equity.

— Hannah Riley Bowles, Roy E. Larsen Senior Lecturer in Public Policy and Management; Co-Director, WAPPP and CPL


The Women and Public Policy Program draws on Harvard University’s unparalleled faculty expertise and its global reach to impact the thinking of those who make decisions across sectors. We empower students, scholars, leaders and changemakers in three keyways:

  • Fund, produce, and identify rigorous, cutting-edge research and convene scholars
  • Deliver world-class leadership development programs for students, emerging leaders, and global executives
  • Disseminate insights and advise policymakers and organizational leaders
Areas of Focus

including challenges of diversity and inclusion, gender in negotiation, work and family, and access to technical training and education.


focusing on advancing non-traditional candidates for political office.


including gender equity in violent conflict, civil resistance, and sexual violence.

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