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Agriculture

Widows' Land Rights and Agricultural Investment

Citation:

Dillon, Brian, and Alessandra Voena. 2018. “Widows' Land Rights and Agricultural Investment.” Journal of Development Economics 135: 449-60.

Authors: Brian Dillon, Alessandra Voena

Abstract:

This paper examines the connection between widows' land inheritance rights and land investments in Zambia. We study whether the threat of land expropriation upon widowhood deters households from fallowing, applying fertilizer, and employing labor-intensive tillage techniques. Variation in inheritance by widows is based on customary village practices, which we observe in surveys of village leaders. Controlling for possible confounding factors, both OLS and IV estimates show lower levels of land investment by married couples in villages where widows do not inherit. Concern over prospective loss of land by the wives reduces investment in land quality even while the husband is alive.

Keywords: land tenure security, widowhood, land investment, gender discrimination, African development, farm productivity

Topics: Agriculture, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Households, Rights, Land Rights Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Zambia

Year: 2018

Women's Land Rights as a Pathway to Poverty Reduction: Framework and Review of Available Evidence.

Citation:

Meinzen-Dick, Ruth, Agnes Quisumbing, Cheryl Doss, Sophie Theis. 2019. “Women's Land Rights as a Pathway to Poverty Reduction: Framework and Review of Available Evidence.” Agricultural Systems 172: 72-82.

Authors: Ruth Meinzen-Dick, Agnes Quisumbing, Cheryl Doss, Sophie Theis

Abstract:

This paper reviews the literature on women’s land rights (WLR) and poverty reduction. It uses the Gender, Agriculture and Assets Project (GAAP) conceptual framework to identify pathways by which WLR could reduce poverty and increase wellbeing of women and their households in rural areas. It uses a systematic review search methodology to identify papers for inclusion, but adopts a more synthetic approach to assess the level of agreement and the amount of evidence within this literature. The paper examines the evidence from qualitative as well as quantitative studies on each of these pathways. Owing to the scarcity of experimental studies, the review of empirical work is based mostly on observational studies. We find some evidence on these relationships, but many of the key pathways have not been empirically analyzed. The evidence is strong for relationships between WLR and bargaining power and decision-making on consumption, human capital investment, and intergenerational transfers. There is a high level of agreement, but weaker evidence on the relationship between WLR and natural resource management, government services and institutions, empowerment and domestic violence, resilience and HIV risk, and consumption and food security. There is less agreement and insufficient evidence on the associations between WLR and other livelihoods, and a higher level of agreement, but still limited evidence on associations between WLR and credit, technology adoption, and agricultural productivity. Notably, we find no papers that directly investigate the link between WLR and poverty. Many gaps in the evidence arise from a failure to account for the complexity of land Rights regimes, the measurement of land rights at the household level, the lack of attention paid to gender roles, and the lack of studies from countries outside Africa. Many studies are limited by small sample sizes, the lack of credible counterfactuals, lack of attention to endogeneity and selection bias, and possible response bias on questions of domestic violence and empowerment. There are very few rigorous evaluations of reforms that strengthened WLR. The paper concludes that gaps in the evidence should not deter the careful design and implementation of programs and policies to strengthen WLR, given the on  going land tenure reforms in many countries. Different modalities and mechanisms for strengthening WLR could be tested, with appropriate counterfactuals. Program designers and evaluators can strategically identify pathways and outcomes where evidence gaps exist, and deliberately design studies to close those gaps.

Topics: Agriculture, Economies, Poverty, Gender, Women, Gender Roles, Households, Rights, Land Rights

Year: 2019

Feminist Political Ecology: Global Issues and Local Experiences

Citation:

Rocheleau, Dianne, Barbara Thomas-Slayter, and Esther Wangari, eds. 1996. Feminist Political Ecology: Global Issues and Local Experiences. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. 

Authors: Dianne Rocheleau, Barbara Thomas-Slayter, Esther Wangari

Annotation:

Summary: 
Feminist Political Ecology explores the gendered relations of ecologies, economies and politics in communities as diverse as the rubbertappers in the rainforests of Brazil to activist groups fighting racism in New York City. Women are often at the centre of these struggles, struggles which concern local knowledge, everyday practice, rights to resources, sustainable development, environmental quality, and social justice.
 
The book bridges the gap between the academic and rural orientation of political ecology and the largely activist and urban focus of environmental justice movements. (Summary from Google Books) 
 
Table of Contents:
1. Gender and Environment: A Feminist Political Ecology Perspective 
Dianne Rocheleau, Barbara Thomas-Slayter, Esther Wangari 
 
2. Out on the Front Lines But Still Struggling for Voice: Women in the Rubber Tappers' Defense of the Forest in Xapuri, Acre, Brazil 
Connie Campbell with the Women's Group of Xapuri
 
3. Feminist Politics and Environmental Justice: Women's Community Activism in West Harlem, New York
Vernice Miller, Moya Hallstein, Susan Quass
 
4. Protecting the Environment Against State Policy in Austria: From Women's Participation in Protest to New Voices in Parliament
Doris Wastl-Walter
 
5. Spanish Women Against Industrial Waste: A Gender Perspective on Environmental Grassroots Movements 
Josepa Brú-Bistuer
 
6. Gendered Visions for Survival: Semi-Arid Regions in Kenya 
Esther Wangari, Barbara Thomas-Slayter, Dianne Rocheleau
 
7. Developing and Dismantling Social Capital: Gender and Resource Management in the Philippines 
M. Dale Shields, Cornelia Butler Flora, Barbara Thomas-Slayter, Gladys Buenavista
 
8. "Our Lives are No Different from That of Our Buffaloes": Agricultural Change and Gendered Spaces in a Central Himalayan Valley 
Manjari Mehta
 
9. Gendered Knowledge: Rights and Space in Two Zimbabwe Villages: Reflections on Methods and Findings
Louise Fortmann
 
10. From Forest Gardens to Tree Farms: Women, Men, and Timer in Zambrana-Chaucey, Dominican Republic 
Dianne Rocheleau, Laurie Ross, Julio Morrobel, (with Ricardo Hernandez, Cristobalina Amparo, Cirilo Brito, Daniel Zevallos, the staff of ENDA-Caribe and the Rural Federation of Zambrana-Chaucey) 
 
11. Where Kitchen and Laboratory Meet: The "Tested Food for Silesia" Program
Anne C. Bellows
 
12. "Hysterical Housewives" and Other Mad Women: Grassroots Environmental Organizing in the United States
Joni Seager
 
13. Feminist Political Ecology: Crosscutting Themes, Theoretical Insights, Policy Implications 
Barbara Thomas-Slayter, Esther Wangari, Dianne Rocheleau

Topics: Agriculture, Development, Economies, Environment, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender, Justice, Political Participation

Year: 1996

Locating Ecofeminism in Encounters with Food and Place

Citation:

Mallory, Chaone. 2013. “Locating Ecofeminism in Encounters with Food and Place.” Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 26 (1): 171–89.

Author: Chaone Mallory

Abstract:

This article explores the relationship between ecofeminism, food, and the philosophy of place. Using as example my own neighborhood in a racially integrated area of Philadelphia with a thriving local foods movement that nonetheless is nearly exclusively white and in which women are the invisible majority of purchasers, farmers, and preparers, the article examines what ecofeminism contributes to the discussion of racial, gendered, classed discrepancies regarding who does and does not participate in practices of locavorism and the local foods movement more broadly. Ecofeminism, it is argued here, with its focus on the ways that race, class, gender, and place are ontologically entangled, helps to highlight the ways identity and society are made and re-made through our encounters with food.

Keywords: ecofeminism, local foods, gender and raced embodiment, co-ops, community supported agriculture, philosophy of place

Topics: Agriculture, Class, Feminisms, Ecofeminism, Livelihoods, Race Regions: Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2013

Ambivalences of Collective Farming: Feminist Political Ecologies from Eastern India and Nepal

Citation:

Leder, Stephanie, Fraser Sugden, Manita Raut, Dhananjay Ray, and Panchali Saikia. 2019. “Ambivalences of Collective Farming: Feminist Political Ecologies from Eastern India and Nepal.” International Journal of the Commons 13 (1): 105–29.

Authors: Stephanie Leder , Fraser Sugden, Manita Raut, Dhananjay Ray, Panchali Saikia

Abstract:

Collective farming has been suggested as a potentially useful approach for reducing inequality and transforming peasant agriculture. In collectives, farmers pool land, labor, irrigation infrastructure, agricultural inputs and harvest to overcome resource constraints and to increase their bargaining power. Employing a feminist political ecology lens, we reflect on the extent to which collective farming enables marginalized groups to engage in smallholder agriculture. We examine the establishment of 18 farmer collectives by an action research project in the Eastern Gangetic Plains, a region characterised by fragmented and small landholdings and a high rate of marginalised and landless farmers. We analyze ambivalances of collective farming practices with regard to (1) social relations across scales, (2) intersectionality and (3) emotional attachment. Our results in Saptari/ Eastern Terai in Nepal, Madhubani/Bihar, and Cooch Behar/West Bengal in India demonstrate how intra-household, group and community relations and emotional attachments to the family and neighbors mediate the redistribution of labor, land, produce and capital. We find that unequal gender relations, intersected by class, age, ethnicity and caste, are reproduced in collective action, land tenure and water management, and argue that a critical feminist perspective can support a more reflective and relational understanding of collective farming processes. Our analysis demonstrates that feminist political ecology can complement commons studies by providing meaningful insights on ambivalences around approaches such as collective farming. 

Keywords: agriculture, collective action, collective farming, commons, feminist political ecology, FPE, gender, India, irrigation, land, Nepal, water

Topics: Age, Agriculture, Caste, Class, Ethnicity, Feminisms, Feminist Political Ecology, Gender, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Households, Intersectionality, Livelihoods, Rights, Land Rights Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India, Nepal

Year: 2019

Smallholder Farmers and Climate Smart Agriculture: Technology and Labor-Productivity Constraints amongst Women Smallholders in Malawi

Citation:

Murray, Una, Zewdy Gebremedhin, Galina Brychkova, and Charles Spillane. 2016. "Smallholder Farmers and Climate Smart Agriculture: Technology and Labor-Productivity Constraints amongst Women Smallholders in Malawi." Gender, Technology and Development 20 (2): 117-48. 

Authors: Una Murray, Zewdy Gebremedhin, Galina Brychkova, Charles Spillane

Abstract:

Climate change and variability present a major challenge to agricultural production and rural livelihoods, including livelihoods of women small- holder farmers. There are significant efforts underway to develop, deploy, and scale up Climate-Smart Agricultural (CSA) practices and technologies to facilitate climate change adaptation for farmers. However, there is a need for gender analysis of CSA practices across different farming and cultural systems to facilitate adoption by, and livelihood improvements for, women smallholder farmers. Climate change poses challenges for maintaining and improving agricultural and labor productivity of women smallholder farmers. The labor productivity of many women smallholders is constrained by lack of access to labor-saving technologies and the most basic of farm tools. Poorer smallholders face a poverty trap, due to low agricultural and labor productivity, from which they cannot easily escape without access to key resources such as rural energy and labor- saving technologies. In Malawi, the agricultural system is predominantly rainfed and largely composed of smallholders who remain vulnerable to climate change and variability shocks. Despite the aspirations of women smallholders to engage in CSA, our research highlights that many women smallholders have either limited or no access to basic agricultural tools, transport, and rural energy. This raises the question of whether the future livelihood scenarios for such farmers will consist of barely surviving or “hanging in”; or whether such farmers can “step up” to adapt better to future climate constraints; or whether more of these farmers will “step out” of agriculture. We argue that for women smallholder farmers to become more climate change resilient, more serious attention to gender analysis is needed to address their constraints in accessing basic agricultural technologies, combined with participatory approaches to develop and adapt CSA tools and technologies to their needs in future climates and agro-ecologies.

Keywords: climate change, women smallholders, labor productivity, participatory technology design, agriculture, economic growth

Topics: Agriculture, Economies, Poverty, Environment, Climate Change, Gender, Women, Gender Analysis, Livelihoods Regions: Africa, Southern Africa Countries: Malawi

Year: 2016

Coming Back Across the Fence: Masculinity and the Transition to Sustainable Agriculture*

Citation:

Peter, Gregory, Michael Mayerfeld Bell, Susan Jarnagin, and Donna Bauer. 2000. “Coming Back Across the Fence: Masculinity and the Transition to Sustainable Agriculture*.” Rural Sociology 65 (2): 215–33.

Authors: Gregory Peter, Michael Mayerfeld Bell, Susan Jarnagin, Donna Bauer

Abstract:

In this paper we explore the social construction of agricultural masculinity and its role in the transition to sustainable agriculture. We draw our evidence from a participatory qualitative study comparing members of the sustainable agriculture group Practical Farmers of Iowa (PFI) with their non-PFI neighbors. On the non-PFI farms, men more often rep- resented what we call monologic masculinity, a conventional masculinity with rigid and polarized gender expectations and strictly negotiated performances that make a clear distinction between men's and women's activities. The male farmers belonging to PFI, on the other hand, more often represented what we call dialogic masculinity, characterized by different measures for work and success than in monologic masculinity, less need for control over nature, and greater social openness. Although both are present to some extent in all male participants, we argue that acceptance of a more dialogic masculinity helps promote the transition to sustainable agriculture.

Topics: Agriculture, Environment, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Livelihoods Regions: Americas, North America Countries: United States of America

Year: 2000

Rural Masculinities in Tension: Barriers to Climate Change Adaptation in Nicaragua

Citation:

Gonda, Noémi. 2017. “Rural Masculinities in Tension: Barriers to Climate Change Adaptation in Nicaragua.” RCC Perspectives: Transformations in Environment and Society, no. 4, 69–76.

Author: Noémi Gonda

Annotation:

Summary: 
Noémi Gonda explores the role of the masculine figure of the cattle rancher in local explorations of climate change adaptation in Nicaragua. Cattle ranchers generally refuse to take part in local projects that encourage cocoa production because it jeopardizes the traditional normative rural masculinity associated with cattle ranchers. Using a case study in El Pijibay, Gonda argues that many climate change projects fail because they do not take the rural population’s gendered subjectivities into account. Instead, these failed projects reinforce both existing inequalities and their intersection with environmental degradation. (Summary from Environment & Society Portal)

Topics: Agriculture, Environment, Climate Change, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality Regions: Americas, Central America Countries: Nicaragua

Year: 2017

Rural Male Suicide in Australia

Citation:

Alston, Margaret. 2012. “Rural Male Suicide in Australia.” Social Science & Medicine 74 (4): 515-22.

Author: Margaret Alston

Abstract:

The rate of suicide amongst Australia’s rural men is significantly higher than rural women, urban men or urban women. There are many explanations for this phenomenon including higher levels of social isolation, lower socio-economic circumstances and ready access to firearms. Another factor is the challenge of climate transformation for farmers. In recent times rural areas of Australia have been subject to intense climate change events including a significant drought that has lingered on for over a decade. Climate variability together with lower socio-economic conditions and reduced farm production has combined to produce insidious impacts on the health of rural men. This paper draws on research conducted over several years with rural men working on farms to argue that attention to the health and well-being of rural men requires an understanding not only of these factors but also of the cultural context, inequitable gender relations and a dominant form of masculine hegemony that lauds stoicism in the face of adversity. A failure to address these factors will limit the success of health and welfare programs for rural men.

Keywords: Australia, suicide, men, rural, gender relations, masculinity, climate, farming

Topics: Agriculture, Environment, Climate Change, Environmental Disasters, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Health, Mental Health Regions: Oceania Countries: Australia

Year: 2012

Migration as a Driver of Changing Household Structures: Implications for Local Livelihoods and Adaptation

Citation:

Singh, Chandni. 2019. “Migration as a Driver of Changing Household Structures: Implications for Local Livelihoods and Adaptation.” Migration and Development, March 15. https://doi.org/10.1080/21632324.2019.1589073.

Author: Chandni Singh

Abstract:

Rapid environmental change, increasing climate variability, land fragmentation, and underlying institutional lacunae have shaped rural livelihoods in India. Increasingly, rural-urban migration has been a significant livelihood strategy to manage risks, meet aspirations, and move out of increasingly unprofitable agriculture. I argue that this movement of people is changing shape household structures, and the metrics to assess these transitions, often through categories of male- and female-headed households, fall short in understanding the experiences and outcomes of migration. Using a household survey (n = 825) and life history interviews (n = 16) to study rural-urban migration in South India, I demonstrate that shifting household configurations due to migration and commuting have implications for the risk management strategies people undertake. This calls for an expanded understanding of the ‘household’, which captures the realities of multi-local households, and consequently, for an expanded conceptualisation of ‘local adaptation’. Such an understanding is sensitive to the ‘beyond-local’ flows and networks that shape household risk management behaviour and has implications for improving the effectiveness of climate change adaptation interventions.

Keywords: migration, aspirations, intra-household dynamics, gender, adaptation, India, climate change

Topics: Agriculture, Displacement & Migration, Climate Displacement, Environment, Climate Change, Gender, Gender Roles, Households, Livelihoods Regions: Asia, South Asia Countries: India

Year: 2019

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