Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Gender workshop showcases efforts to mainstream women contribution in rice farming

The IRRI Gender Research Team organized the GRiSP Gender Research Network workshop to showcase a wide variety of GRiSP research and outreach activities in Asia and Africa. National and international scientists from IRRI headquarters, IRRI-India, IRRI-Bangladesh, and representatives from Bangladesh Rice Research Institute, Philippine Rice Research Institute, and Africa Rice Center attended the event held at IRRI Headquarters, Philippines on 25−27 June.

In his opening speech, Matthew Morell, IRRI deputy-director general for research, discussed how research on gender can influence the adoption and impact of rice knowledge and technologies, and help in developing policies and strategies for the implementation of programs.

“All our research must be directly targeted to making a significant measurable difference,” Dr. Morell said.
In her keynote speech Gelia Castillio, rural sociologist and IRRI consultant, emphasized the need to give women a face and an identity instead of being treated as data and statistics. She recommended undertaking research projects to follow-up the current status of the women who have benefitted from past GRiSP projects.

Dr. Hope Webber, IRRI monitoring and evaluation specialist, stressed the need for collecting sex-disaggregated data to facilitate project evaluation. Dr. Sonia Akter, IRRI gender specialist, discussed the CGIAR recommended minimum standard guidelines for sex-aggregated data collection.

The lessons learned from technology dissemination, status of women's empowerment, as well as the impact of climate change and male out-migration on women’s changing role in agriculture were among those highlighted and discussed.

Workshop participants made a commitment to continue high-quality, policy-relevant, action-oriented research activities to foster gender-equity and enhance women's empowerment across the globe.

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