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Gender and Rural Development

Woman farmer in Senegal

New Publications and Resources

"Where women are the majority of smallholder farmers, failure to release their full potential in agriculture is a contributing factor to low growth and food insecurity."
Agriculture for Development. The 2008 World Development Report 

"A timely and extremely important document as the criticality of increased agricultural investment is never more so clear as today with the potential crisis facing the world's poor with soaring food prices."
Nata Duvvury, International Center for Research on Women (ICRW)

Gender in Agriculture Sourcebook

Sourcebook Coverfeature

World Bank Resources

Monitoring and Evaluation: Targets and Indicators
Monitoring and Evaluation for World Bank Agricultural Research and Extension Projects: A Good Practice Note 
Gender in Monitoring and Evaluation in Rural Development: A Tool Kit
Social and Environmental Sustainability of Agriculture and Rural Development Investments: A Monitoring and Evaluation Toolkit
Tracking Results in Agriculture and Rural Development in Less-than-Ideal Conditions

Other Gender Resources for Rural Development 
Gender in Agricultural and Rural Operations
Gender and Development at the World Bank

Regional Gender Sites
 Sub-Saharan Africa
- East Asia and the Pacific
- Europe and Central Asia
- Latin America and the Caribbean
- Middle East and North Africa
- South Asia

Women play a vital role as agricultural producers and as agents of food and nutritional security. Yet relative to men, they have less access to productive assets such as land and services such as finance and extension. A variety of constraints impinge upon their ability to participate in collective action as members of agricultural cooperative or water user associations. In both centralized and decentralized governance systems, women tend to lack political voice.

Gender inequalities result in less food being grown, less income being earned, and higher levels of poverty and food insecurity. Agriculture in low-income developing countries is a sector with exceptionally high impact in terms of its potential to reduce poverty.

Yet for agricultural growth to fulfill this potential, gender disparities must be addressed and effectively reduced. Investing in agriculture should mean investing in the people who farm, and these are largely women. However women farmers receive only a tiny proportion of official development assistance (ODA). Of the roughly 10 percent of total ODA that is directed at agricultural development, an estimated 8 percent goes to projects and programs with explicit gender components based on a review by the OECD.

 IFAD Rural Poverty Portal: Gender
- FAO SD Dimensions: Gender and Development
- CGIAR Participatory Research and Gender Analysis
- CGIAR Gender Research Network
- UNDP Women's Empowerment
- UNIFEM Women, Poverty and Economics
- ILO Rural Development, Training and Gender
- ILO SEAPAT Online Gender Learning and Information Module
- International Women's Tribune Center
- Inter-American Development Bank: Gender Equality and Development
- Technical Center for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA)
- USAID Women in Development
- Wiring up a Knowledge Revolution in Rural India

"Rural poverty is deeply rooted in the imbalance between what women do and what they have."
The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)

"The full and equal participation of women and men in, and their full enjoyment of the benefits from agricultural and rural development are essential for eradicating food insecurity and rural poverty and enhancing agricultural and rural development."
The FAO Gender Action Plan 2002-2007

"Without a significant investment in improving the livelihoods, assets and decision-making of rural women, the Millennium Goals to reduce poverty and food insecurity are unlikely to be achieved."
The Network of Women Agriculture Ministers and Leaders