Gender and Agriculture Related Resources

Reaching Rural Women

Gender-Sensitive Agricultural Extension 

Targeting Women in Rural Advisory Services

Agriculture + Food Security Network Brief No 1. By Jane Carter and Nara Weigel, HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation, December 2011

This short paper draws from the inputs of A+FS Network members to an e-discussion held in September 2011.


Meinzen-Dick, Ruth, Quisumbing, Agnes, Behrman, Julia, Biermayr-Jenzano, Patricia, Wilde, Vicki, Noordeloos, Marco, Ragasa, Catherine, Beintema, Nienke. (2011). Engendering Agricultural Research, Development, and Extension. Washington: International Food Policy Research Institute.

Quisumbing, Agnes R. and Lauren Pandolfelli. Promising approaches to address the needs of poor female farmers. IFPRI Discussion Paper 0082. Washington, DC: IFPRI. 

World Bank, FAO and IFAD (2009):

Gender in Agriculture Sourcebook. Washington, DC: The World Bank.

OR view at

Gender: The Key to Successful Development Programming

Gender Inequality & Gender-based Violence in Livelihoods, Agriculture, Health & HIV programming

Catholic Relief Services in Southern Africa conducted a study to understand how gender dynamics in the communities we serve relates to our programming.

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IFAD's Performance with regard to Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment
Full document


International Center for Research on Women,

Food and Agriculture, specifically:

Evolving Men - Initial Results from the International Men and Gender Equality Survey (IMAGES)


Gender related resources from the USAID sponsored Collaborative Research Support programs:

Nichols Barrett, Kara, Cristina Manfre and Deborah Rubin. 2009. Promoting Gender Equitable Opportunities: Why It Matters for Agricultural Value Chains. Publication prepared for the Greater Access To Trade Expansion (Gate) Project under The Women In Development IQC Contract No. GEW-I-00-02-00018-00, Task Order No. 02. Washington, DC: United States Agency for International Development.

Rubin, Deborah, Cristina Manfre, and Kara Nichols Barrett. 2009. Promoting Gender Equitable Opportunities in Agricultural Value Chains: A Handbook. Publication prepared for the Greater Access To Trade Expansion (Gate) Project under The Women In Development IQC Contract No. GEW-I-00-02-00018-00, Task Order No. 02. Washington, DC: United States Agency for International Development.
Rubin, Deborah and Cristina Manfre. 2010. A Guide to Integrating Gender into Agricultural Value Chains. Publication prepared for Juarez and Associates under prime contract #GEW-I-00-02-00020-00, Task Order No. 06. Washington, DC: United States Agency for International Development.

Additional USAID/WID resources:

ODI, UK Overseas Development Institute (U.K.)

Gender Mainstreaming. Background paper - Key Sheets for Sustainable Livelihoods Policy Planning and Implementation - 4, July 2001. Edited by Lucia Hanmer. The debate about gender mainstreaming over the past 5 years.

Resources posted by

"Women perform 66% of the world’s work, produce 50% of the food, but earn 10% of the income and own 1% of the property"

World Bank

World Bank. 2001. Engendering Development: Through Gender Equality in Rights, Resources, and Voice. New York: Oxford University Press. 


African Women in Agricultural Research and Development. See

African women in agricultural research and development (AWARD) program. www.genderdiversity, 

This video by the Ford Foundation looks at the African Women Leaders in Agriculture & Environment (AWLAESM) program, which created a critical mass of African women who are now leaders in the fields of agriculture and environment, two of the most important sectors across the continent.

Sustainable Agriculture Extension Manual for Eastern and Southern Africa

An illustrated extension manual covering countries from Ethiopia to Lesotho. 50 chapters on how to promote sustainable agriculture, implement credit schemes, improve land use, incorporate gender perspectives, conserve soil and water, maintain soil fertility, improve cropping systems, and promote livestock in agriculture. Published in 1998 by the International Institute of Rural Reconstruction's Africa office.

Also available in Swahili.


Environmentally Sound Technologies for Women in Agriculture

A manual covering a range of low-input technologies useful for farm women in South Asia and elsewhere. Published in 1996 by the International Federation for Women in Agriculture and the International Institute of Rural Reconstruction.


Assessment of Extension and Advisory Methods and Approaches to Reach Rural Women 
(Led by Dr. Tahseen Jafry, Glasgow Caledonian University, United Kingdom, conducted throughout 2013) 
  • Examples from Malawi – (prepared by Dr. Tahseen Jafry, Glasgow Caledonian University, Boyson Moyo and Lessah Mandoloma, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Malawi, and published March 2014).

MEAS Discussion Paper:

(click to access or download from below)

MEAS Technical Note: 

MEAS and Gender in the Press

Giving Women Farmers the Tools to Prevent Food Insecurity, by Busani Bafana

Can Men Cook or Should They?

MEAS Gender Training Material

(Click on the title below to access the material)

  • Integrating Gender into Extension Services 
    by Kathleen E. Colverson, University of Florida

    The analysis and incorporation of gender issues is rarely included in extension work. Yet, women are the primary agricultural labor force throughout the world and perform agricultural tasks with fewer resources, less access to technology and the added responsibility of child and family oversight. The vast majority of extension agents are male, and are not trained in how to work with women farmers. Few recognize the contributions that women make to agriculture, nor are they aware of how best to serve this population’s needs. As extension remains a significant resource of information for limited resource farmers, (the majority of whom are women), the inclusion of methodologies and approaches that address gender is critical for extension’s success.


FAO "The State of Food and Agriculture" focused on "Women in Agriculture". The publication was released at the occasion of the International Women's Day, 3/8/2011. The full document is available at 

Seebens, H. (2011). Intra-household bargaining, gender roles in agriculture and how to promote welfare enhancing changes. (Working Paper No. 11-10). Frankfurt: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

Gender sensitive participatory approaches to building producer organizations 

Lessons Learned

  • Not without men. Creation of the women’s wing of the Federation of Farmers' Organizations of Andhra Pradesh (FFA-AP) in India. By Coby Meyboom, Ira Stam and Géke Appeldoorn

The process of the creation of a Women’s Wing within the Federation of Farmers' Organizations of Andhra Pradesh (FFA-AP) started in 2008, when the board made the official decision to establish a special Women’s Wing within the structure of the federation. In this process three [...]

  • Gender mainstreaming in value chain development: Experience of gender action learning system in Uganda, by Linda Mayoux, Janet Biira, Paineto Baluku and Thies Reemer

GALS is a structured community-led empowerment methodology aiming at ‘constructive economic, social and political transformation’. GALS originated in a generic methodology for livelihood development: Participatory Action Learning System (PALS) developed by Linda Mayoux. It which started [...]

  • SEWA’s organizational model: empowering small-scale women farmersby Denis Herbel and Reema Nanavaty

Indian agriculture employs almost 60% of the population. The female share in agriculture exceeds those of males, as 72.8 % of women are involved in agriculture activities compared to 48.9% of men . Small and marginal farmers account for about 82% of total farmers in the country. For small-scale [...]

  • Positive experiences of working women trade unionists of the Banana Unions and the Agro-industrial sector Coordination COLSIBA, by Iris Munguia

It was in early 1905 that the banana industry was settled in Honduras, created by Samuel Semurra. The first companies belonged to the Zemurray Hubbard Company; later, towards the beginning of the first world war, the United Fruit Company acquired 35% of the shares of the second [...]

  • Promising Practices: How cooperatives work for working women in Africa, by ILO CoopAfrica

In Africa, cooperatives can and do work for working women. Regardless of the sector they belong to or the types of cooperative they represent – whether marketing, financial, workers’, or housing, for instance - cooperatives are powerful vehicles of social inclusion and political and [...]

  • Gender equity in Rural Producers' Organizations (RPOs), by Mauro Bottaro

Women make essential contributions to agriculture and rural economic activities in all developing countries. The vast majority of food production attributable to women makes them the principle agents of food security and household welfare in rural areas. Yet, despite their central role in the [...]

Rural Organizations: A sustainable basis for rural women’s empowerment and participation (draft), FAO; IFAD, IFAD/FAO Grant Programme for Regional Gender Capacity and Knowledge Briefs, 2011, EN, 5 p.

Rural women’s entrepreneurship is “good business”!, FAO; IFAD; ILO; Gender and Rural Employment Policy Brief 3/2010, EN, SP, FR, 4 p.

Agricultural value chain development: Threat or opportunity for women’s employment?, FAO; IFAD; ILO; Gender and Rural Employment Policy Brief 4/2010, EN, SP, FR, 4 p.

Agricultural cooperatives: Paving the way for food security and rural development, FAO; WFP; IFAD, 2011, EN, 4 p.

Aquaculture farmer organizations and cluster management. Concepts and experiences, Kassam, L.; Subasinghe, R.; Phillips, M., FAO; WorldFish Center, FAO Fisheries and Aquaculture Technical Paper No. 563, 2011, EN, 90 p.

Gender in agriculture sourcebook, IBRD, FAO Gender, Equity and Rural Employment Div.; IFAD, Agriculture and Rural Development Series (IBRD), 2009, EN, 764 p.

Promoting rural women’s cooperative businesses in Thailand. A training kit, Premchander, S; Prameela, V.; Polman, W., 2004, EN, 220 p.

Livelihood and micro-enterprise development opportunities for women in coastal fishing communities in India – Case studies of Orissa and Maharashtra, Tietze, U.; Siar, S.; Upare, S. M.; Upare, M.A, FAO Fisheries Circulars C1021 , 2007, EN, 69 p.

SEAGA, Socioeconomic and Gender Analysis Programme. Field handbook, Wilde, V.L., FAO Women and Population Div., 2001, EN, FR, ES, 194 p.

SEAGA, Socioeconomic and Gender Analysis Programme. Intermediate-level handbook, Huisinga Norem, R., FAO Women and Population Div, 2001, EN, FR, ES, 109 p.

Women groups leadership development and management training, Bhusunde Khola watershed (Nepal), 13 - 28 April 1995, FAO, Rome (Italy). Forestry Dept., Inter- Regional Project for Participatory Upland Conservation and Development, Field document 2/95, INT/542/ITA, 1995, EN, 24 p.

World Bank and the ONE Campaign: The report “Leveling the Field: Improving Opportunities for Women Farmers in Africa” offers new evidence and fresh insights on the factors that account for the gender gap in six African countries: Ethiopia, Malawi, Niger, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda. Drawing on data collected by national statistics offices with assistance from the Living Standards Measurement Study – Integrated Surveys on Agriculture (LSMS-ISA) programme, and applying an established statistical method in a new way, the report allows for richer, more detailed analyses of gender dynamics in agriculture. By identifying the precise factors responsible for the gender gap in each of these six countries, it suggests specific policy proposals to address the main constraints that women farmers face and generate benefits for the economy as a whole. These findings and policy recommendations are outlined in the attached summary report. The full report (6 MB) can be downloaded via:

IFPRI Policy Seminar, November 22, 2013

Beyond Gender MythsClosing the knowledge gap in agriculture and food security. Event featured Ruth Meinzen-Dick (IFPRI), Agnes Quisumbing (IFPRI), Terri Raney (FAO), Deborah Rubin (Cultural Practice, LLC). Video, powerpoints, and audio podcasts available. Link: Event page

Resources from the 2013 USAID Gender Global Learning and Evidence Exchange

Watch session recordings and access resources from the Feed the Future Gender Global Learning & Evidence Exchange held May 22-24, 2013, where attendees discussed strategies to increase understanding of how gender equality improves food security and increases agricultural production.

Women in Extension Video by AccessAgriculture:

Food production in women’s fields could easily increase if we paid attention to gender when dealing with these four areas: demand for training and advice; extension methods and content; access to land, inputs and credit; and access to markets. This video targets research and development organisations, as well as agricultural service providers.

New International Journal of Gender, Agriculture and Food Security (Agri-Gender) 
A new journal, the Journal of Gender, Agriculture and Food Security (Agri-Gender) has been launched with the aim of providing a platform for researchers and practitioners to share information on research work on gender, agriculture and food security. The aim of Agri-Gender is to promote interdisciplinary research related to gender and the agricultural and food sciences. It is an open access, peer-reviewed and refereed journal that will publish in the fields of agriculture including livestock, fisheries, crop sciences, agriculture economics, rural development, food security and nutrition as they relate to gender. The journal will also publish papers on issues of women’s empowerment, feminist and gender studies. More information on the journal requirements can be found at