The core work of Women in Cities International is performed by a small staff based in Montréal, Canada. The staff is supported by a body of enthusiastic and knowledgeable interns.
As Executive Director of Women in Cities International (WICI), Kathryn oversees the organisations’ functions and leads the development, management and coordination of WICI’s programmes, projects and research. She has a successful history of developing and managing programmes in Canada and internationally and has effectively worked to broaden the understanding of women’s safety by bringing an intersectional approach to her work and by collaborating with different groups of women and girls to explore new related issues (accessibility, essential services, adolescence, etc.). Kathryn has led the development of new and innovative tools for capturing data about women’s and girls’ safety experiences in urban environments and has led training workshops in several countries. She has extensive experience in working with diverse populations in the global North and South including adolescent girls, women with disabilities, indigenous women, elderly women, women living in informal settlements, etc. She has contributed to the development of groundbreaking research reports, including the production of the reports Adolescent Girls’ Views on Safety in Cities (2013) and Gender and Essential Services in Low-Income Communities (2011). She was a co-organizer of the Third International Conference on Women’s Safety. Before joining WICI, Kathryn worked for ICPC on issues of women’s safety, youth at risk and urban safety.
Jennifer Robert-Colomby, Senior Analyst and Project Officer
As Senior Analyst at WICI, Jennifer supports the monitoring and evaluation of community security projects from a gender perspective. Jennifer independently conducts thorough research and literature review, data compilation and analysis on violence against women. Jennifer wrote and presented a report for UN-Habitat’s “Safer Cities” program and case study of Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso). She maintains consistent communication as liaison between stakeholders, partners and other UN agencies. Jennifer is a graduate of University of Montreal with Masters’ degrees in International Compared Politics and International Relations. She has applied experience in research and analysis of international development, with particular interest in gender equality issues, as well as Latin American politics.
Arianne Kent, Research Intern
Arianne got involved at WICI to promote female inclusion and participation in cities, working towards better communities. Arianne studies sociology and women’s studies at McGill. Dina and Arianne are currently working on developing and implementing an awareness campaign called “Right to Campus” on McGill’s downtown campus. The goal is to promote inclusion and safety through creating a more considerate and accommodating environment based in education.”
Dina Al Shawwa, Research Intern
As a research intern at WICI, Dina has been developing the project Right to Campus with Arianne. The project will be implemented at the beginning of the 2016 fall semester, along with McGill Orientation week and will continue throughout the year with various events and campaigns.
Lucía joined WICI to help to establish strategic partnerships, and conducting projects with high social impact locally, nationally and internationally. She has a graduate degree in International Relations from the Tec de Monterrey and a Masters on Governance and Public Policy. Lucía has held several positions within the government, international organizations, NGOs and private sector. She is specialized in project management with regards to environment studies and human rights protection and guarantee, with a special focus on gender mainstreaming, since she worked for the United Nations Organization, the Women National Institute in Mexico and the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources as a public servant. Lucía has designed and implemented many important initiatives pertaining to indigenous peoples and local communities, mainly with women, on sustainability and empowerment, and helped them bring their unique concerns to the CBD COP-13 held in Cancún, last December 2016.
Hannah McCasland, Communications Volunteer
As a communications intern, Hannah informs and engages WICI’s followers and members through our website, newsletter, and social media. Hannah curates and posts content about the projects WICI is currently working on and shares information, articles, and perspectives that are in line with WICI’s mission. Hannah is a fourth year student majoring in History and completing a double minor in World Cinemas and Gender, Sexuality, Feminist, and Social Justice studies. Hannah takes a particular interest in media history and the history of feminist movements.
Karlene is a recent graduate of McGill University with a degree in Political Science and Urban Studies. Her areas of research have focused on East Asian foreign policy and urban development through a queer theory lens. She plans on pursuing a career in international urban development.
Shiva is currently pursuing a Master’s of Arts in political science and development studies at McGill University, where she also earned a bachelor’s of Arts in Political Science and Middle East Studies. Her various research interests include the role of politics and policies in influencing attitudes toward gender equality.Shiva is very passionate about women’s and children’s rights issues. She also enjoys traveling and learning about different cultures, especially through food and her continuous search for the next perfect cup of coffee!
Yala is an urban planning graduate of University of Montreal and now pursuing a Master’s in Civil Engineering. Yala is very interested in informal settlements, and how minorities and disadvantaged groups of people can contribute to the sustainable development of cities. Yala is very passionate about exploring new cities and cultures, specially to get out of their comfort zone.
As a research intern, Miranda will be working with Arianne and Dina on the Right to Campus campaign. Miranda is motivated to expand her understanding of gender and equity dynamics in public spaces, as a student of the Master’s of Urban Planning Degree at McGill University. She has an undergraduate degree in Economics from the University of Ottawa, and has worked in international development programming at Global Affairs Canada. Miranda aims to integrate her knowledge of global institutions and economic phenomena, with participatory approaches to supporting equitable urban development. In her free time, Miranda is an advanced kickboxer, which fuels her passion for women’s equality in sport.