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Decision and Policy Analysis Research Area – DAPA

Women as drivers of positive change

Original post written by: Stefanie Neno (CIAT)

In many developing countries, women play a major role in agricultural activity. They can be responsible for growing and selling crops and livestock, in addition to taking care of the household and all the members of the family.

As a result of climate change – which can exacerbate pests and plant diseases, degraded landscapes, declined soil fertility, reduced yields, increased rain variability, droughts, and soil erosion – – women’s daily stress and work load can increase dramatically.

The impacts of climate change, combined with sociocultural norms that sometimes limit women’s property rights, decision making power, access to the most profitable crops and animals, and access to information and education, can make women more vulnerable to poverty.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) estimates that the total number of hungry people around the world could be reduced by 12-17 percent if women’s access to and control over resources were equivalent to that of men.

If development projects are to succeed, we need to see women as agents of change – as strong drivers for mitigation and adaptation. Tools exist to help research and development projects successfully engage women and ensure equal benefits for both men and women.

On the occasion of International Women Day, CIAT is excited to present a new short animation that sheds light on how climate change is impacting the lives of rural women around the world, and provides three suggestions to make women integral to research and development projects, for the interest of all.

For more information:

Jennifer Twyman Social Scientist, Decision and Policy Analysis Research Area. j.twyman@cgiar.org

Manon Koningstein, Communications Specialist Gender & Climate Change. m.j.koningstein@cgiar.org

And visit CIAT Gender and CGIAR Gender pages.

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