293. Governments have the primary responsibility for implementing the Platform for Action. Commitment at the highest political level is essential to its implementation, and Governments should take a leading role in coordinating, monitoring and assessing progress in the advancement of women. [To this end, Governments have been invited to state their own specific national commitments for priority action within the context of the Platform for Action. These specific commitments will result in practical outcomes for women and girls and will ensure that the Fourth World Conference on Women is a conference of commitments. The specific commitments announced by individual Governments at the Conference appear in an annex to the report of the Conference.]
294. National mechanisms and institutions for the advancement of women should participate in public policy formulation and encourage the implementation of the Platform for Action through various bodies and institutions, including the private sector, and, where necessary, should act as a catalyst in developing new programmes by the year 2000 in areas that are not covered by existing institutions.
295. The active support and participation of a broad and diverse range of other institutional actors should be encouraged, including legislative bodies, academic and research institutions, professional associations, trade unions, cooperatives, local community groups, non-governmental organizations, including women's organizations [and feminist movements], the media, religious groups, youth organizations and cultural groups, as well as financial and non-profit organizations.
296. In order for the Platform for Action to be implemented, it will be necessary for Governments to establish or improve the effectiveness of national machineries for the advancement of women at the highest political level, appropriate intra- and inter-ministerial procedures and staffing, and other institutions with the mandate and capacity to broaden women's participation and integrate gender analysis into policies and programmes. The first step in this process for all institutions should be to review their objectives, programmes and operational procedures in terms of the actions called for in the Platform. A key activity should be to promote public awareness and support for the goals of the Platform for Action, inter alia, through the mass media and public education.
297. As soon as possible, preferably by the end of 1995, Governments, in consultation with relevant institutions and non-governmental organizations, should begin to develop implementation strategies for the Platform and, preferably by the end of 1996, should have developed their strategies or plans of action. This planning process should draw upon persons at the highest level of authority in Government and relevant actors in civil society. These implementation strategies should be comprehensive, have time-bound targets and benchmarks for monitoring, and include proposals for allocating or reallocating resources for implementation. Where necessary, the support of the international community could be enlisted, including resources.
298. Non-governmental organizations should be encouraged to contribute to the design and implementation of these strategies or national plans of action. They should also be encouraged to develop their own programmes to complement government efforts. Women's organizations [and feminist movements] in collaboration with other non-governmental organizations should be encouraged to organize networks, as necessary, to advocate for and support the implementation of the Platform for Action by Governments and regional and international bodies.
299. Governments should [commit themselves to] [establish the goal of] gender balance, inter alia, through the creation of special mechanisms, in all [government committees,] boards and other relevant official bodies, as well as in all international bodies, institutions and organizations, notably by presenting and promoting more women candidates.