Towards Decolonial Feminist Leadership

November 5 – November 15, 2024, JRCT Campus, Dharmshala, India

Application deadline: August 15, 2024.

Facilitator: Sarika Sinha

Towards Decolonial Feminist Leadership is a 10-day course hosted by the Coady Institute in collaboration with a network of feminist organisations (Jagori Rural Charitable Trust for one, is our host) and organizers across South Asia. The programme is geared to look at the world through a decolonial feminist lens. In a world ruled by an exclusionary capitalist regime, the course aims to unpack both the concept and practice of leadership from the standpoint of power, intersectionality, patriarchy and inequalities. The course, further, attempts to highlight the significance of feminist and collective leadership processes in the movement towards redistributive justice. Thus, the course engages in interrogating key leadership concepts and challenges mainstream assumptions to break the binary between leader and follower and encourage empowerment of communities and community of leaders.

What is unique about this course is that it encourages and inculcates feminist critical thinking through adult education methods and equips participants with skills, content and knowledge to challenge a world order based on a dominant capitalist economic paradigm, and interrogates an alternative towards an equitable ecological paradigm. With methodologies that address the historical injustice, colonialism and contemporary world analysis, the course empowers participants to enhance their capabilities and encourage collaborative leadership and learning.

This course is for persons from South Asia who identify as women.

This course is meant to inspire and empower people who identify as women across South Asia to engage in purposeful and justice-oriented leadership and design just processes, systems and structures in the communities where they are present. Apart from leading towards a better world, and taking on leadership with more content, strategies, conviction and confidence, the course is geared to improving our homes, workplaces, societies, and states.

Benefits and Learning Objectives

You will walk away with:

  • A deeper understanding of the following concepts and the ability to apply them to your practice:
    • Sex, gender and intersectionality
    • Patriarchy and Feminism
    • Power and Empowerment
    • Complexity and pluralities of feminist interventions
  • The ability to apply and enact Feminist leadership models within your organization and community work
  • Reflections on your purpose as a leader
  • Practical tools and strategies for advancing justice and equity within our work
  • The opportunity to network with an inspired group of women to de/construct approaches that break down gender-oriented barriers and constraints limiting community well-being, agency and autonomy.

By attending this course your organization will be able to:

  • Develop a sound understanding of the way forward for achieving gender equality and advancing women’s leadership, both in terms of opportunities as well as emerging challenges from your specific contexts;
  • Delve and critique strategies for a community–centered response to the challenges and opportunities including social inclusion and leadership of women, youth, indigenous people, and other historically oppressed groups

Learning Methods

Coady educational opportunities are learner-centred and experiential. Learning is achieved through active participation and drawing on the diversity of our perspectives, knowledge, and skills. Throughout the course you can expect to be required to read reference material and complete some short written and/or oral assignments, while also participating in group discussions, individual and collective reflection, and arts and theatre-based activities

Time Requirement

The course will run from November 5 – November 15, in person, in Dharmashala, India. You should be prepared to engage in full days of learning activities for the duration of the course, with a one day break on Sunday.

Who should take this course?

The strength of this course is in the diversity of participants who identify as women.

The rainbow coalition of ages, nationalities, family responsibilities, education, religions, orientation, ethnicities and working lives creates a dynamic context for learning. People who are in midst of a struggle towards a just world and closely work with marginalized communities are most welcome.


Coady Institute ensures that participants working with marginalized communities around the world have access to its courses. This is made possible through the provision of bursaries that are funded by many individual and institutional donors. Accepted participants to this course will receive a full bursary to cover tuition, room and board in India, and ground transportation from the airport to the course site. All travel related expenses including airfare and visa fees, as well as travel cancellation and emergency medical insurance, are the responsibility of the participant, including airfare to and from India.