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West Africa

Water Hauling and Girls’ School Attendance: Some New Evidence from Ghana

Citation:

Nauges, Céline, and Jon Strand. 2017. “Water Hauling and Girls’ School Attendance: Some New Evidence from Ghana.” Environmental and Resource Economics 66 (1): 65–88.

Authors: Céline Nauges, Jon Strand

Abstract:

In large parts of the world, a lack of home tap water burdens households as the water must be brought to the house from outside, at great expense in terms of effort and time. We here study how such costs affect girls’ schooling in Ghana, with an analysis based on four rounds of the Demographic and Health Surveys. We address potential endogeneity issues by building an artificial panel of clusters using GPS coordinates. Our results indicate a significant negative relation between girls’ school attendance and water hauling activity, as a halving of water fetching times increases girls’ school attendance by about 7 percentage points on average, with stronger impacts in rural communities. Our results seem to be the first definitive documentation of such a relationship in Sub-Saharan Africa. They document some of the multiple and wide population benefits of increased tap water access, that are likely to be relevant in many African countries, and elsewhere.

Keywords: Household water access, panel data, school attendance, Sub-Saharan Africa

Topics: Education, Gender, Girls, Infrastructure, Water & Sanitation, Livelihoods Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Ghana

Year: 2017

Understanding Gender Dimensions of Agriculture and Climate Change in Smallholder Farming Communities

Citation:

Jost, Christine, Florence Kyazze, Jesse Naab, Sharmind Neelormi, James Kinyangi, Robert Zougmore, Pramod Aggarwal, Gopal Bhatta, Moushumi Chaudhury, Marja-Liisa Tapio-Bistrom, Sibyl Nelson, and Patti Kristjanson. 2016. “Understanding Gender Dimensions of Agriculture and Climate Change in Smallholder Farming Communities.” Climate and Development 8 (2): 133-44.

Authors: Christine Jost, Florence Kyazze, Jesse Naab, Sharmind Neelormi, James Kinyangi, Robert Zougmore, Pramod Aggarwal, Gopal Bhatta, Moushumi Chaudhury, Marja-Liisa Tapio-Bistrom, Sibyl Nelson, Patti Kristjanson

Abstract:

In Uganda, Ghana and Bangladesh, participatory tools were used for a socio-economic and gender analysis of three topics: climate-smart agriculture (CSA), climate analogue approaches, and climate and weather forecasting. Policy and programme relevant results were obtained. Smallholders are changing agricultural practices due to observations of climatic and environmental change. Women appear to be less adaptive because of financial or resource constraints, because of male domination in receiving information and extension services and because available adaptation strategies tend to create higher labour loads for women. The climate analogue approach (identifying places resembling your future climate so as to identify potential adaptations) is a promising tool for increasing farmer-to-farmer learning, where a high degree of climatic variability means that analogue villages that have successfully adopted new CSA practices exist nearby. Institutional issues related to forecast production limit their credibility and salience, particularly in terms of women’s ability to access and understand them. The participatory tools used in this study provided some insights into women’s adaptive capacity in the villages studied, but not to the depth necessary to address women’s specific vulnerabilities in CSA programmes. Further research is necessary to move the discourse related to gender and climate change beyond the conceptualization of women as a homogenously vulnerable group in CSA programmes.

Keywords: gender, participation, climate change, agriculture, smallholders

Topics: Agriculture, Environment, Climate Change, Gender, Gender Analysis Regions: Africa, East Africa, West Africa, Asia, South Asia Countries: Bangladesh, Ghana, Uganda

Year: 2016

Connecting Women, Connecting Men: How Communities and Organizations Interact to Strengthen Adaptive Capacity and Food Security in the Face of Climate Change

Citation:

Cramer, Laura, Wiebke Förch, Ianetta Mutie, and Philip K. Thornton. 2016. “Connecting Women, Connecting Men: How Communities and Organizations Interact to Strengthen Adaptive Capacity and Food Security in the Face of Climate Change.” Gender, Technology and Development 20 (2): 169-99.

Authors: Laura Cramer, Wiebke Förch, Ianetta Mutie, Philip K. Thornton

Abstract:

Given the different roles that women and men play in households and communities, strategies to improve food security and build adaptive capacity need to take gender differences into account. In many developing countries, local organizations have a role to play in it. However, the degree to which there is an overlap among the priorities of men, women, and organizations (including non-governmental bodies, local government offices, and other agencies working in the community) is not generally known, nor do we know whether organizations are strengthening the adaptive capacity of both men and women effectively and equally. Using gender-disaggregated data arising from community- level participatory research and organizational-level interviews from 15 sites across West Africa, East Africa, and South Asia, we conduct a cross-regional analysis of local organizational landscapes as they relate to livelihoods and food security. We find that in all regions, women tend to value local organizations more highly and thus appear to be less connected to external organizations than men. Additionally, women’s perception of food security is broader than men’s, going beyond a production focus. Most of the local organizations with food security as a stated objective focus on production, which can marginalize/alienate women. Given the effects that climate change is predicted to have on food security, development organizations should consider the differing priorities of men and women, and use a gendered perspective when building adaptive capacity to respond to climate change, and to maintain/ improve food security. Such work can, perhaps, most effectively be implemented through existing community groups.

Keywords: adaptive capacity, food security, gender roles, climate change, organizations

Topics: Environment, Climate Change, Food Security, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, International Organizations, Livelihoods, NGOs, Rights Regions: Africa, East Africa, West Africa, Asia, South Asia

Year: 2016

A Woman's Field is Made at Night: Gendered Land Rights and Norms in Burkina Faso

Citation:

Kevane, Michael, and Leslie C. Gray. 1999. “A Woman's Field is Made at Night: Gendered Land Rights and Norms in Burkina Faso.” Feminist Economics 5 (3): 1-26.

Authors: Michael Kevane, Leslie C. Gray

Abstract:

Gendered social norms and institutions are important determinants of agricultural activities in southwestern Burkina Faso. This paper argues that gendered land tenure, in particular, has effects on equity and efficiency. The usual view of women as holders of secondary, or indirect, rights to land must be supplemented by a more nuanced understanding of tenure. Women's rights are in fact considerably more complex than the simple right to fields from their husbands. First, women's rights to property obtained from men may be coupled with other rights and obligations. In many ethnic groups, women have share rights to the harvest of their husbands. Second, despite land scarcity and rises in land value certain types of rights are strengthening. Specifically, women are more and more able to obtain land through the market. Finally, government intervention in the gendering of tenure seems to have eroded women's individual rights to land even when government projects explicitly try to incorporate women as "partners" in land-use programs.

Keywords: land, africa, gender, women, Burkina Faso

Topics: Agriculture, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equity, Rights, Human Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Burkina Faso

Year: 1999

Property Rights and the Gender Distribution of Wealth in Ecuador, Ghana and India

Citation:

Deere, Carmen Diana, Abena D. Oduro, Hema Swaminathan, and Cheryl Doss. 2013. “Property Rights and the Gender Distribution of Wealth in Ecuador, Ghana and India.” Journal of Economic Inequality 11 (2): 249–65.

Authors: Cheryl Doss, Carmen Diana Deere, Abena D. Oduro, Hema Swaminathan

Abstract:

Women’s ability to accumulate wealth is often attributed to whether they have property rights; i.e., a legal personality to own and manage property. In this paper we argue that basic property rights are insufficient; whether women are able to accumulate wealth also depends upon the marital and inheritance regimes in particular contexts. Drawing upon surveys which collected individual level ownership data in Ecuador, Ghana and the state of Karnataka in India, we estimate married women’s share of couple wealth and relate it to how assets are owned within marriage as well as to different inheritance regimes and practices. In Ecuador, married women own 44 %, in Ghana, 19 %, and in Karnataka, 9 % of couple wealth. Ecuador is characterized by the partial community property regime in marriage while inheritance laws provide for all children, irrespective of sex, to be treated equally, norms that are largely followed in practice. In contrast, Ghana and India are characterized by the separation of property regime which does not recognize wives’ contribution to the formation of marital property, and by inheritance practices that are strongly male biased. Reforming marital and inheritance regimes must remain a top priority if gender economic equality is to be attained.

Keywords: inheritance regimes, marital regimes, women's property rights, asset ownership, wealth in developing countries

Topics: Economies, Economic Inequality, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Rights, Human Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, West Africa, Americas, South America, Asia, South Asia Countries: Ecuador, Ghana, India

Year: 2013

Revisiting the World Bank’s Land Law Reform Agenda in Africa: The Promise and Perils of Customary Practices

Citation:

Collins, Andrea, and Matthew I. Mitchell. 2018. “Revisiting the World Bank’s Land Law Reform Agenda in Africa: The Promise and Perils of Customary Practices.” Journal of Agrarian Change 18 (1): 112–31.

Authors: Andrea Collins, Matthew I. Mitchell

Abstract:

This paper revisits the World Bank's land law reform agenda in Africa by focusing on two central issues: (1) land law reform as a tool for resolving land conflicts, and (2) the role of land law reform in addressing gender inequalities. While the Bank's recent land report provides insights for improving land governance in Africa, it fails to acknowledge the exploitative and contentious politics that often characterize customary land tenure systems, and the local power dynamics that undermine the ability of marginalized groups to secure land rights. Using insights from recent fieldwork, the paper analyses the links between land law reform and conflict in Ghana, and the gendered dynamics of reforming land governance in Tanzania. These “crucial cases” illustrate how land law reform can provoke conflicts over land and threaten the rights of vulnerable populations (e.g. migrants and women) when customary practices are uncritically endorsed as a means of improving land governance. As such, the paper concludes with a series of recommendations on how to navigate the promise and perils of customary practices in the governance of land.

Keywords: africa, customary practices, Ghana, land law reform, tanzania, World Bank

Topics: Conflict Prevention, Displacement & Migration, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Conflict, Governance, International Financial Institutions, International Organizations, Rights, Land Rights, Property Rights Regions: Africa, East Africa, West Africa Countries: Ghana, Tanzania

Year: 2018

Gender Dimensions of (Non)Violence in Communal Conflict: The Case of Jos, Nigeria

Citation:

Krause, Jana. 2019. "Gender Dimensions of (Non)Violence in Communal Conflict: The Case of Jos, Nigeria." Comparative Political Studies: 1-34.

Author: Jana Krause

Abstract:

Peacebuilding is more likely to succeed in countries with higher levels of gender equality, but few studies have examined the link between subnational gender relations and local peace and, more generally, peacebuilding after communal conflict. This article addresses this gap. I examine gender relations and (non)violence in ethno-religious conflict in the city of Jos in central Nigeria. Jos and its rural surroundings have repeatedly suffered communal clashes that have killed thousands, sometimes within only days. Drawing on qualitative data collected during fieldwork, I analyze the gender dimensions of violence, nonviolence, and postviolence prevention. I argue that civilian agency is gendered. Gender relations and distinct notions of masculinity can facilitate or constrain people’s mobilization for fighting. Hence, a nuanced understanding of the gender dimensions of (non)violence has important implications for conflict prevention and local peacebuilding.

Keywords: communal violence, gender relations, nonviolence, peacebuilding, masculinities

Topics: Armed Conflict, Ethnic/Communal Wars, Ethnicity, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Conflict, Nonviolence, Peacebuilding, Post-Conflict, Religion, Violence Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Nigeria

Year: 2019

Gender and (Militarized) Secessionist Movements in Africa: An African Feminist’s Reflections

Citation:

Mougoué, Jacqueline-Bethel Tchouta. 2018. "Gender and (Militarized) Secessionist Movements in Africa: An African Feminist's Reflections." Meridians 17 (2): 338-58.

Author: Jacqueline-Bethel Tchouta Mougoué

Abstract:

Utilizing interdisciplinary and multimethodological approaches, this essay explores women’s roles in buttressing the political cohesion of secessionist movements in postcolonial Africa. It argues that African women have supported the actions of male-dominated secessionist movements in order to garner their own social and political power. Using case studies from Anglophone Cameroon, Western Sahara, Cabinda Province (Angola), and Biafra (Nigeria), the essay historicizes and outlines a new analytical framework that explores women’s multifaceted participation in secessionist movements in modern-day Africa.

Keywords: gender, secessionism, Cameroon, Cabinda, Western Sahara, Biafra

Topics: Armed Conflict, Secessionist Wars, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Political Participation Regions: Africa, Central Africa, North Africa, West Africa Countries: Angola, Cameroon, Nigeria, Western Sahara

Year: 2018

Saving Nigerian Girls: A Critical Reflection on Girl-Saving Campaigns in the Colonial and Neoliberal Eras

Citation:

George, Abosede. 2018. "Saving Nigerian Girls: A Critical Reflection on Girl-Saving Campaigns in the Colonial and Neoliberal Eras." Meridians 17 (2): 309-24.

Author: Abosede George

Abstract:

This essay discusses girl-saving campaigns in Nigerian history, focusing on the two that have been most extensively documented: the girl hawker project of the early twentieth century, which climaxed with the 1943 passage of the first hawking ban in Nigeria, and the #BringBackOurGirls campaign, which started in 2014 and is still ongoing. Though separated by time and space, in order to inspire salvationist impulses in their respective audiences both campaigns have relied on a gendered notion of imperilment that centers the image of the youthful female body threatened by sexual violence from male aggressors. Yet through its reliance on certain restrictions, gendered and otherwise, the portrait of the vulnerable girl that campaigners outline inadvertently prompts disidentifications as well.

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Gender, Girls, Gender Analysis, Gendered Power Relations, Sexual Violence, Male Perpetrators, SV against women Regions: Africa, West Africa Countries: Nigeria

Year: 2018

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