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Über dieses Buch

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) produced a 2011 report on women in agriculture with a clear and urgent message: agriculture underperforms because half of all farmers—women—lack equal access to the resources and opportunities they need to be more productive. This book builds on the report’s conclusions by providing, for a non-specialist audience, a compendium of what we know now about gender gaps in agriculture.



Closing the Knowledge Gap on Gender in Agriculture


Chapter 1. Closing the Knowledge Gap on Gender in Agriculture

This introductory chapter provides an overview of the book, Gender in Agriculture: Closing the Knowledge Gap. The book grew out of collaborative work done for Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) flagship report, The State of Food and Agriculture 2010–11, Women in agriculture: Closing the gender gap for development, highlighting the important and varied roles of women in agriculture, their unequal access to productive resources and opportunities relative to men, and the gains that could be achieved by closing the gender gap in agriculture. This book provides a more thorough treatment of the conceptual and empirical basis of the FAO report, and fills a niche in the literature for a standard reference for the analysis of gender issues in agriculture. This chapter defines basic concepts related to sex and gender and discusses changes in the way gender issues have been conceptualized in agriculture from the work of Ester Boserup, to the Women in Development (WID) and Gender and Development (GAD) debate, to current approaches that recognize the importance of both women and men and the interplay between the two in agriculture. It traces how gender issues have been addressed institutionally and discusses shifting paradigms in the economic analysis of the household, including how demographic processes surrounding household formation and dissolution, gender differences across the life cycle, and migration have implications for the gender gap in agriculture. It then provides a summary of each of the chapters, suggests areas for future research, and explores implications for development policy and practice.
Agnes R. Quisumbing, Ruth Meinzen-Dick, Terri L. Raney, André Croppenstedt, Julia A. Behrman, Amber Peterman

Data and Methods for Gender Analysis in Agriculture


Chapter 2. Understanding Gender and Culture in Agriculture: The Role of Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches

Because gender relations are complex and context-specific, nuanced, context-specific data collection and analytical methods are recommended. This chapter presents a suite of quantitative and qualitative methods for collecting and analyzing data on gender relations in agriculture. It begins with a detailed overview of how quantitative and qualitative methodologies can be employed to collect gender and assets data for agricultural research. It reviews the use of mixed-methods approaches in research projects to strengthen research findings and to create a more complete and convincing picture of gender relationships. Three case studies illustrate the ways in which qualitative and quantitative data can be used together in analyzing the gender dimensions of agriculture: adoption of maize varieties in Mexico, adoption of maize varieties in Zimbabwe, and agricultural technology dissemination in Bangladesh. In these three examples, using integrated mixed-methods enabled researchers to understand more about the processes underlying the adoption of agricultural technologies. The chapter concludes with a number of important data needs for gender work in quantitative and qualitative agricultural research.
Julia A. Behrman, Ruth Meinzen-Dick, Agnes R. Quisumbing

Chapter 3. Data Needs for Gender Analysis in Agriculture

To support gender analysis in agriculture, household surveys should be better designed to capture gender-specific control and ownership of agricultural resources such as male-, female- and jointly-owned assets. This chapter offers guidelines on how to improve data collection efforts to ensure that women farmers are interviewed and that their voices are heard. Researchers need to clarify who should be interviewed, how to structure the interview, and how to identify which people are involved in various activities, as owners, managers, workers, and decision makers. It is important not simply to assume that one particular individual does these activities based on social norms, but instead to ask the questions to allow for a range of answers that can demonstrate how the gender patterns in agriculture are changing. To assist in these efforts, the chapter provides an overview of relevant questions to include, emphasizing that whenever questions are asked about ownership and access to resources, answers should be associated with individuals. Finally, collecting data on the institutions that are related to agricultural production and marketing allows analysis of the gender-based constraints and opportunities that they present.
Cheryl Doss

Chapter 4. If Women Hold Up Half the Sky, How Much of the World’s Food Do They Produce?

This chapter explores—and explodes—the oft-quoted stylized fact that women produce 60–80 % of food in the developing world. It uses three approaches to shed light on this issue: (1) analyzing labor inputs to agriculture, using both employment data and time-use data; (2) analyzing different ways of assigning agricultural output to men or women, based on four nationally representative household survey datasets; and (3) estimating women’s labor productivity relative to men at the macro level, using national-level agricultural productivity data across time and countries. While it is not possible to substantiate the claim that women produce 60–80 % of the food in developing countries—or even that they provide 60–80 % of the labor in agriculture, women contribute a large portion of the measured contributions to agricultural labor and women’s share of the measured agricultural labor force has a positive impact on national-level agricultural productivity. While women are not the majority of agricultural workers, the agricultural sector is important for women: 48 % of the economically active women in the world—and 79 % in developing countries—report that their primary activity is agriculture. The “60–80 %” statistical claim obscures the complex underlying reality, that it is difficult to separate women’s labor from other uses and from men’s labor, and that it cannot be understood properly without considering the gender gap in access to land, capital, assets, human capital, and other productive resources.
Cheryl Doss

Gender, Assets, and Inputs: Issues at the Farm and Household Levels


Chapter 5. The Gender Asset Gap and Its Implications for Agricultural and Rural Development

Because gender differences in access, control, and use of assets are pervasive in the agricultural sector, agricultural development interventions are likely to have gender-differentiated impacts. This chapter proposes a conceptual framework to explore the potential linkages between gender, assets, and agricultural development projects in order to gain a better understanding of how agricultural development interventions may be expected to (positively or negatively) impact the gendered distribution of assets. It uses a broad definition of tangible and intangible assets—natural capital, physical capital, human capital, social capital, and political capital. The conceptual framework identifies linkages between the gendered distribution of assets and various livelihood strategies, shocks, and well-being, and discusses how agricultural development strategies may affect the gender asset gap. In addition, the framework explores the gendered pathways through which asset accumulation occurs, including attention to not only men’s and women’s assets but also those they share in joint control and ownership. Unlike previous frameworks, this model depicts the gendered dimensions of each component of the pathway in recognition of the evidence that men and women not only control, own, or dispose of assets in different ways, but also access, control, and own different kinds of assets.
Ruth Meinzen-Dick, Nancy Johnson, Agnes R. Quisumbing, Jemimah Njuki, Julia A. Behrman, Deborah Rubin, Amber Peterman, Elizabeth Waithanji

Chapter 6. Gender Equity and Land: Toward Secure and Effective Access for Rural Women

Land is one of the most fundamental assets in the agricultural sector because it is the gateway through which people gain access to many other assets and opportunities. This chapter examines gender and land issues, identifying the gender gap in land rights and examining ways to redress this gap. The first section frames the discussion in terms of the four major ways by which women acquire legal and customary rights to land, and the obstacles to women’s secure land tenure. The second section explores the nature and extent of the global gender land gap and the importance of going beyond common notions such as management, ownership, and headship, when discussing land tenure security. The third section looks at a number of strategies undertaken by a variety of actors—including governments, aid agencies, and civil society organizations—to lessen the gender land gap, organized broadly around three types of interventions: strengthening women’s land rights, redistribution of land rights, and improving the implementation of reforms. The chapter concludes that closing the gender land gap must go beyond reforms that affect only landownership, to include those that affect the multiple ways through which women and men acquire land, whether through legal or statutory means, the family, the market, or civil society.
Susana Lastarria-Cornhiel, Julia A. Behrman, Ruth Meinzen-Dick, Agnes R. Quisumbing

Chapter 7. A Review of Empirical Evidence on Gender Differences in Nonland Agricultural Inputs, Technology, and Services in Developing Countries

Empirical research on gender dimensions in agricultural inputs has focused on land. This chapter reviews existing microeconomic empirical literature from the past 10 years on gender differences in use, access, and adoption of nonland agricultural inputs in developing countries. The review focuses on three key areas: (1) technological resources, (2) natural resources, and (3) human resources. In general, there has been more empirical research on inorganic fertilizer, seed varieties, and extension services than on tools and mechanization and life-cycle effects, and most of the studies are from Sub-Saharan Africa. A consistent finding is that, across different types of inputs, men generally have higher input measures than women, and that this input gap is responsible for observed productivity differences between men and women; however, this finding is often sensitive to the use of models that control for other background factors, as well as the type of gender indicator implemented in the analysis. The final section presents future directions, opportunities, and recommendations for microeconomic gender analysis of nonland agricultural inputs.
Amber Peterman, Julia A. Behrman, Agnes R. Quisumbing

Chapter 8. Rural Women’s Access to Financial Services: Credit, Savings, and Insurance

This chapter reviews rural women’s access to financial services, a key factor underlying many successful rural development strategies. Designing appropriate financial products for women to be able to save, borrow, and insure is essential to strengthen women’s role as producers and widen the economic opportunities available to them. Context-specific legal rights, social norms, family responsibilities, and women’s access to and control over other resources play an important role in shaping rural women’s needs for capital and their ability to obtain it. The chapter argues that interventions that improve rural women’s direct access to financial services—not mediated through their husbands—can be beneficial on two fronts. First, by addressing the constraints women face, these interventions enhance women’s productive capacity. Second, by improving women’s relative power in their households, these interventions can lead to both a more efficient allocation of resources and to improved health, nutrition, and education in their families, all of which are expected to improve long-term production capabilities. The products and service delivery models introduced to address some of the constraints faced by women include technical innovations that improve access to existing financial services, changes in product design to better tailor products to women’s preferences and constraints, and the development of new products such as micro-insurance.
Diana Fletschner, Lisa Kenney

Chapter 9. Livestock and Women’s Livelihoods

Livestock make substantial contributions to the livelihoods of poor women in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, yet the factors that enhance or constrain livestock-related opportunities for women have received relatively little empirical analysis. This review applies a gender lens to a conceptual framework for understanding the role of livestock in pathways out of poverty, using a livelihoods approach that centralizes the importance of assets, markets, and other institutions. The three hypothesized livestock pathways out of poverty are (1) securing current and future assets, (2) sustaining and improving the productivity of agricultural systems in which livestock are important, and (3) facilitating greater participation of the poor in livestock-related markets. While these three pathways are distinct, with each requiring particular strategies and interventions to be successful, they are not mutually exclusive. The chapter summarizes what is known for each pathway and what these pathways imply for programmatic and policy interventions.
Patti Kristjanson, Ann Waters-Bayer, Nancy Johnson, Annita Tipilda, Jemimah Njuki, Isabelle Baltenweck, Delia Grace, Susan MacMillan

Chapter 10. Gender and Social Capital for Agricultural Development

Social capital comprises the range of relationships, networks, and institutions that allow people to build trust and cooperation. This chapter documents gender differences in social capital related to agricultural development, defined as group membership and social networks, based on a critical literature review of key issues and a review of published and unpublished empirical studies conducted between 1999 and 2011. The authors focus on the types of groups and social networks that women and men join, the extent of their participation, as well as the gender-specific barriers that may affect women’s full-scale participation. The analysis goes beyond simple dichotomies of men’s and women’s groups and networks to investigate whether, and under what circumstances, mixed-sex groups may be more effective than single-sex groups in achieving their development objectives. Following this, the authors examine the effects of women’s participation on both group performance and extant gender relations and discuss what development actors can do to help realize gains in these areas. The chapter concludes with a summary of the evidence on whether women are disadvantaged in comparison to men in the accumulation of social capital, and if so, the extent to which programs are helping to overcome this gap.
Ruth Meinzen-Dick, Julia A. Behrman, Lauren Pandolfelli, Amber Peterman, Agnes R. Quisumbing

Chapter 11. Gender Implications of Poor Nutrition and Health in Agricultural Households

For most of the rural poor, their most important asset is their own physical capacity for work. This depends crucially on individual nutritional and health status. This chapter summarizes the evidence on gender differences in vulnerabilities to poor nutrition and health, and their potential effects on the productivity of men and women in farming households. Adopting a life-cycle perspective, the chapter examines the implications of four key health and nutritional disorders—undernutrition, iron-deficiency anemia, HIV, and malaria—for the productivity and well-being of men and women in agriculture. These disorders have both direct and interacting impacts, with the nature of the disorder and the context in which it is found determining its exact impacts and the strategies required to cope with nutrition and health shocks. In each case, the impact on the productivity of women is different from that on the productivity of men for biological, social, and cultural reasons. The author discusses several promising policies and interventions to prevent and mitigate some of the negative impacts of specific disorders discussed above on women’s agricultural productivity and production. The chapter concludes by proposing further research on understanding the complexities of women’s time use and trade-offs in coping with ill health and poor nutrition in agriculture, and on evaluating the most promising policies and programs to protect poor women and enhance their productivity in agriculture and income-generating activities.
Jody Harris

Gender and Markets: Moving Beyond the Farm


Chapter 12. Promoting Gender-Equitable Agricultural Value Chains: Issues, Opportunities, and Next Steps

This chapter reviews the growing body of work on reducing gender-based barriers to value chain development. It highlights key questions that are emerging within the gender and value chain community related to methodologies for promoting both greater gender equity and efficiency. The authors lay out the rationale and evidence for promoting gender equitable value chains focusing on business, social justice, and development goals. The chapter then reviews the terms and assumptions used in value chain approaches and provides evidence and examples of different gender and value chain approaches. The authors also look at gender issues in value chain performance and gender issues benefitting from value chain production, including employment and income and social capital and networking. This is followed by a review of current debates in the field of gender and value chain studies. The concluding section identifies new questions and challenges facing researchers and practitioners, for example, on chain selection, targeting of women, and achieving food security and improved nutrition in value chain development.
Deborah Rubin, Cristina Manfre

Chapter 13. Mainstreaming Gender Sensitivity in Cash Crop Market Supply Chains

Gender-specific constraints on the production and marketing of cash crops have important implications for the ability of men and women to participate in market-oriented agricultural growth and development. This chapter analyzes how gender inequalities in resources result in different levels of participation, methods of production, and modes of marketing cash crops. Two empirical case studies of traditional perennial export cash crops—cocoa in Ghana and coffee in Uganda—provide empirical evidence on the effects of such constraints. Women cocoa farmers in Ghana face barriers in accessing input markets, particularly markets for labor and non-labor inputs, influencing their choice of production technology. In Uganda, the low quantities marketed, and lack of access to bicycles, limit female coffee farmers to marketing channels that have very low transaction costs, but which receive lower prices. To enable women to engage in cash crop production, the authors provide three context-specific recommendations: (1) improving women’s access to land and encouraging better integration of food markets through improved roads and increased mobile networks; (2) strengthening female farmers groups or marketing groups to which female farmers can belong so that women may achieve scale in marketing; and (3) improving access to credit and extension services to relieve female farmers’ constraints in purchasing quantity- or quality-enhancing inputs. Further work in assessing the patterns and underlying determinants of female engagement in a wide variety of cash crop markets will be needed to better identify the most appropriate interventions.
Ruth Vargas Hill, Marcella Vigneri

Chapter 14. Gender Inequalities in Rural Labor Markets

This chapter explores gender differences in rural employment that hinder the achievement of food security and the reduction in poverty. This chapter begins with a review of employment statistics to uncover gender differences in rural employment with particular reference to traditional agriculture and modern agro-industries, identifying gender gaps in wages, working conditions, and occupational segregation as key challenges to overcome. The chapter argues that the barriers to gender equality in rural labor markets are socially constructed and primarily stem from systemic institutional gender inequalities. These institutions include both social norms and the structure of labor market organizations. While institutional change cannot take place overnight, particularly with regard to changing social norms, much can be done to improve gender equity in rural labor institutions through government policies, corporate social responsibility programs, and building the strength of women in labor organizations. This involves overcoming vested interests in the status quo that provides a supply of cheap labor, and therefore requires both political will and resources.
Jennie Dey de Pryck, Paola Termine

Toward a Gender-Sensitive Agricultural Research, Development, and Extension System


Chapter 15. A System That Delivers: Integrating Gender into Agricultural Research, Development, and Extension

A paradigm shift is required in agricultural research, development, and extension (R, D, & E) systems in developing countries, from a focus on production toward a broader view of agriculture and food systems in which women’s distinct role in ensuring the food security of their households is better recognized. The authors develop a conceptual framework linking various actors in the agricultural R, D, & E cycle that involves including women in agricultural priority-setting, conduct of research, development and extension, adoption and evaluation of new technologies, and impact assessment. It also entails recognizing women’s roles throughout the value chain for both food and nonfood crops and for both marketed and nonmarketed commodities. Throughout the chapter the authors review each stage of the R, D, & E cycle, arguing that a number of key questions must be asked, including who are the actors? Who are the users of the technology? Whose needs are addressed at each stage, from priority setting, through implementation, to evaluation and impact assessment?
Ruth Meinzen-Dick, Agnes R. Quisumbing, Julia A. Behrman

Chapter 16. Enhancing Female Participation in Agricultural Research and Development: Rationale and Evidence

Enhancing women’s participation in agricultural research in developing countries can be an effective strategy for making agricultural research and development (R&D) systems more gender-aware. This chapter reviews the evidence on the trends in women’s participation in agricultural research with more detailed analysis of Sub-Saharan Africa, for which more detailed information is available. The author makes use of the Agricultural Science and Technology Indicators (ASTI) initiative, which is one of the few sex-disaggregated data sources on agricultural researchers in developing countries. In developing countries, less than one out of four researchers is a woman, although large differences exist across countries. The share of women employed in agricultural research and development has been increasing in most countries, but their share disproportionately declines on the higher rungs of the career ladder. The chapter summarizes the various general human resource challenges in agricultural R&D that developing countries face, specifically in Sub-Saharan Africa, especially the challenges women face prior to and during their science careers. In addition to reviewing important data, the author makes an argument for why increased participation of women in science is important in the developing world.
Nienke Beintema

Chapter 17. Improving Gender Responsiveness of Agricultural Extension

This chapter makes the case for improving the gender-responsiveness of agricultural extension systems through consideration of (1) whether the gender of the extension agent affects the effectiveness of extension services; (2) whether both men and women receive extension advice; and (3) how extension services are delivered. As part of this, the author looks at issues surrounding quality and emphasis of extension services. The author then reviews the evidence on gender differences in access to formal extension agent visits and to other sources of extension information, and the factors that lead to women having lower access to extension services. At this point, the chapter examines the experience of programs and projects that aim to increase women’s access to extension, with more detailed analysis of extension system reforms in India (ATMA model), Uganda (NAADS), Venezuela (privatization and decentralization), and Ethiopia (sectoral policies). Subsequently, the chapter reviews innovative literature on the use of Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) in extension. The concluding section examines lessons learned and key messages.
Catherine Ragasa


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