25 February, 2022
Image: Michael Tewelde/FAO
Quote of the Week:
"Bukavu, the provincial capital that hugs the shores of Lake Kivu, has one of the highest reported incidences of gender-based violence (GBV) in the world.

South Kivu’s economy is precarious and there are limited employment opportunities for both women and men. Following years of civil war, many public institutions remain weak, compounding already high rates of poverty and instability motivated by a thriving trade in precious minerals.

Gender-based violence (GBV) can be physical and sexual violence against people who diverge from their society’s ‘rules’ about what it means to be male or female. It can also include emotional and economic acts of harm, as well as sexual exploitation, abuse, and harassment.

Samantha warns that GBV can have far-reaching effects for food security and agriculture by:
  • reducing on- and off-farm capacity
  • restricting access to extension and community support
  • increasing household costs
  • preventing participation in markets, community enterprises, and savings and loans groups
  • reducing economic output
  • contributing to decreased productivity.
In many cases, Dr. Bullock says, “we might forget that we’re working with individuals that are part of a household, a family network. Often, the actions taken with an individual don’t stop there. It’s really important to think about these relationships that can support or hinder a project’s intended outcomes.”"





...and finally, some food for thought

"To this end, the researchers analyzed the relationship between access to modern energy and fertility based on panel data synthesized from 155 Demographic and Health Surveys spanning a period of 26 years. Controlling for other determinants, the results show that access to electricity and modern cooking fuels, along with education, negatively affect fertility. The results further indicate that energy and education effects are complementary and strongest in regions with initially high fertility rates.

“We found that switching to modern fuels like gas or electricity not only improves health, it also relieves women of the need to have many children, to do time-consuming housework like fetching firewood, or cook on open fires. This frees up time to seek information and education and eventually helps women realize their reproductive rights. This is a direct line connecting the switch from modern energies to the demographic transition,” explains Camille Belmin, lead author of the study and a researcher at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK)."

– ​​Roman Hoffmann and Ansa Heyl, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)


Advancing Women in Agriculture through Research and Education (AWARE) is an initiative by the Department of Global Development in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University to engage a community focused on empowering women in agriculture. AWARE believes that empowering women as an underserved group holds the greatest potential to make significant impacts in agricultural development.

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