Advancing Gender Equality through Agricultural and Environmental Research: Past, Present, and Future


November 3, 2021

Book Launch event on November 23, 2021>>

The past decade has seen renewed, and more concerted and comprehensive interest in gender equality and women’s empowerment in the agricultural development sector. This momentum has created a unique opportunity to advance gender equality, and to institutionalize gender research within agricultural research for development (AR4D) organizations. A new book “Advancing Gender Equality through Agricultural and Environmental Research: Past, Present, and Future” is a part of this overall momentum and the growing body of evidence and ideas it is generating.

The book marks a shift away from a typical, instrumentalist outlook focused on how gender analysis can contribute to research objectives, such as improved productivity. Contributors to this book intentionally flip the question to ask: How does agricultural and environmental research and development contribute to gender equality and women’s empowerment?

The book highlights the history and wealth of gender knowledge that has been generated to date by researchers from CGIAR — an international partnership of agricultural and environmental research institutes — and beyond. For CGIAR, this is an opportune moment to take stock of progress and articulate a forward-looking agenda for future gender research.

The first set of chapters tackles technical research topics that have integrated gender (breeding, seed systems, value chains). The second set delves into research themes where gender analysis is well integrated and even pivotal (nutrition-sensitive agriculture, natural resource governance, climate adaptation and mitigation). The third set covers strategic gender-specific themes (the feminization of agriculture, assessing women’s empowerment, gender transformative approaches).

Read the book synopsis (Download in PDF)

Read the book (Download in PDF)

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 CGIAR research through an equality and empowerment lens [download]
Rhiannon Pyburn and Anouka van Eerdewijk | p. 1-76

Chapter 2 Examining choice to advance gender equality in breeding research [download]
Vivian Polar, Rohini Ram Mohan, Cynthia McDougall, Béla Teeken, Annet Abenakyo Mulema, Pricilla Marimo, and Jummai Othniel Yila | p. 77-112

Chapter 3 Moving beyond reaching women in seed systems development [download]
Ranjitha Puskur, Netsayi Noris Mudege, Esther Njuguna-Mungai, Eileen Nchanji, Ronnie Vernooy, Alessandra Galiè, and Dina Najjar | p. 113-146

Chapter 4 Promise and contradiction: Value chain participation and women’s empowerment [download]
Markus Ihalainen, Sumer Shaikh, Gaudiose Mujawamariya, Sarah Mayanja, Sounkoura Adetonah, Katie Tavenner, and Marlène Elias | p. 147-188

Chapter 5 Nutrition-sensitive agriculture for gender equality [download]
Hazel Malapit, Jessica Heckert, Jessica Scott, Ravula Padmaja, and Agnes Quisumbing | p. 189-220

Chapter 6 A gender–natural resources tango: Water, land, and forest research [download]
Deepa Joshi, Iliana Monterroso, Bryce Gallant, Kokila Perera, and Valentina Peveri | p. 221-260

Chapter 7 From vulnerability to agency in climate adaptation and mitigation [download]
Sophia Huyer, Tatiana Gumucio, Katie Tavenner, Mariola Acosta, Nitya Chanana, Arun Khatri-Chhetri, Catherine Mungai, Mathieu Ouedraogo, Gloria Otieno, Maren Radeny, John Recha, and Elisabeth Simelton | p. 261-298

Chapter 8 From the “feminization of agriculture” to gender equality [download]
Cheryl Doss, Ayesha Qaisrani, Katrina Kosec, Vanya Slavchevska, Alessandra Galiè, and Nozomi Kawarazuka | p. 299-328

Chapter 9 Assessing women’s empowerment in agricultural research [download]
Marlène Elias, Steven Michael Cole, Agnes Quisumbing, Ana Maria Paez Valencia, Ruth Meinzen-Dick, and Jennifer Twyman | p. 329-364

Chapter 10 Toward structural change: Gender transformative approaches [download]
Cynthia McDougall, Lone Badstue, Annet Mulema, Gundula Fischer, Dina Najjar, Rhiannon Pyburn, Marlène Elias, Deepa Joshi, and Andrea Vos | p. 365-402


Pyburn, Rhiannon, ed.; and van Eerdewijk, Anouka, ed. 2021. Advancing gender equality through agricultural and environmental research: Past, present, and future. Washington, DC: International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).

The work on this book was undertaken as part of the CGIAR Research Program on Policies, Institutions, and Markets (PIM) led by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). The authors and editors are grateful for the funding support provided by the CGIAR Fund contributors to PIM and by Canada’s International Development Research Centre. We thank all CGIAR Centers and Research Programs that supported the authors in contributing to this book—it was a systemwide effort reflecting insights from a wide array of gender researchers with diverse backgrounds and perspectives.

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