The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
Table of Contents
The International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) seeks sustainable solutions for ending hunger and poverty. IFPRI is one of 15 centers supported by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), an alliance of 64 governments, private foundations, and international and regional organizations.
Gender research is critical to IFPRI’s mission of contributing effectively to food and nutrition security and poverty reduction. This includes both research in which gender analysis is a key focus of the methodology and research in which gender is a significant variable in the analysis.
For the past 15 years, IFPRI has collected data, tested models, and generated important findings on how gender relates to food and nutrition security, power and resource allocation within the household, market development and trade, institution-building, land tenure, natural resource management and overall economic development and poverty reduction.
Women’s Assets Research Program
IFPRI’s intra divisional Research Program on Strengthening Women’s Control of Assets, co-led by Ruth Meinzen-Dick and Agnes Quisumbing, was officially approved by IFPRI’s Senior Management Team (SMT) in May 2008. Special initiative funds for this GRP were allocated to support three IFPRI researchers in different divisions to build questions on women’s assets into existing surveys, to undertake gender-specific analysis of existing data sets, and to seek funding for stand-alone programs.
The principal goal of the Strengthening Women’s Assets Global Regional Program is to contribute to poverty reduction through policies and interventions that strengthen women’s control over critical assets by:
1) Identifying the social, economic and institutional factors that facilitate or impede women’s access and control over assets
2) Assessing the consequences of the asset gap on development outcomes and exploring returns to reducing or eliminating that gap
3) Strengthening methods for measuring men’s and women’s effective access to and control over assets
4) Evaluating the effectiveness of various approaches to increase women’s control over assets (including defining the appropriate asset bundle)
5) Developing tools for monitoring and evaluating the impact of interventions on asset accumulation and depletion, particularly by poor women.’
This project does not limit itself to a narrow definition of assets (i.e. natural, physical and financial capital) but also includes human, social, and political capital in order to allow greater scope for policy interventions and to exploit policy linkages across sectors. This broader definition of assets thus encompasses both tangible assets, such as physical capital, as well as intangible assets, such as human and social capital.
Gender & the Food Price Crisis
“The current food price crisis has received widespread attention, but discussions to date have largely overlooked the gender dimensions of the crisis. More than 15 years of rigorous research on gender and intrahousehold resource allocation suggest not only that men and women will be affected differently by the global food crisis, but also that, as both consumers and producers, they will have different stocks of resources with which to respond to rising prices. Although the current situation calls for an urgent national and international response, urgency is not an excuse for misguided policies that fail to address the gender implications of the crisis. Instead, decisionmakers should take this opportunity to incorporate what is known about women’s roles in agricultural production and household welfare, and the specific challenges they face, both to craft more effective policy responses and to enable women to respond better to the current challenges and opportunities.”
Excerpt from ‘Helping Women Respond to the Global Food Price Crisis’ 2008 IFPRI Policy Brief
Read the full Brief:
Gender & Collective Action
The CGIAR Systemwide program on Collective Action and Property Rights (CAPRi) takes an active interest in gender issues. “Collective action plays a vital role in many people’s lives, through such areas as income generation, risk reduction, public service provision, and the management of natural resources. However, men’s and women’s interests often differ because they have different rights, resources, and responsibilities. Due to these differences as well as socially constructed norms of what it means to be male and female, men’s and women’s voices are often not equally represented or valued in collective action institutions. Including a gender perspective in these institutions can lead to more effective and equitable outcomes.This brief summarizes findings from an international workshop on Gender and Collective Action organized in 2005 by CAPRi in Chiang Mai, Thailand..” — from Text
The CGIAR Systemwide program on Collective Action and Property Rights (CAPRi) recently funded two research projects exploring the links between gender and institutions of collective action. These two projects, based in Bangladesh and Nigeria, were oriented around the objectives of (1) developing policy-relevant findings on how the interaction of gender relations with institutions of collective action can contribute to reducing poverty, (2) developing and disseminating best practices for methodologies to address the links between gender and collective action, and (3) strengthening the capacity of the CGIAR centers and their local partners to integrate gender issues into applied research.
State of Food and Agriculture (2009) SOFA
The Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations chose ‘Gender and Agriculture’ as the topic of its 2009 State of Food and Agriculture (SOFA) report.
Researchers from IFPRI contributed four papers to the 2009 SOFA. These papers included a review of existing studies on gender differences in access to non-land inputs, a new empirical study of gender differences in agricultural productivity in Uganda and Nigeria and two pieces on the impact of shocks on gender differences in asset accumulation (one in Nigeria, one in Bangladesh).
Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development
Researchers from IFPRI, the GCIAR Gender & Diversity Program and the CGIAR PRGA Program co authored a paper on “Engendering Agricultural Research” for the Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development in Montpellier France (April 2010). This paper makes a case for gender equity in the agricultural R&D system. It reviews the evidence on exactly why it is important to pay attention to gender issues in agriculture and why it is necessary to recognize women’s distinct food-security roles throughout the entire value chain—for both food and nonfood crops, marketed and nonmarketed commodities. The authors examine whether women are factored into the work of research institutions, and whether research institutions effectively focus on women’s needs. In short, are these institutions conducting research by and for women? The paper’s conceptual framework demonstrates the need to integrate gender into setting agricultural priorities; conducting the research itself; designing, implementing, and adopting extension services; and evaluating their impacts. It concludes with recommendations regarding how to make these suggested changes.
To obtain a copy of this paper please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Summer 2010 gender resources
- Understanding gender differences in agricultural productivity in Uganda and Nigeria
- Does social capital build women’s assets?
- Gender & Food Policy News Blog Facilitated by IFPRI