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The State of Food and Agriculture 2010-2011

Women in Agriculture - Closing the Gender Gap for Development

image of The State of Food and Agriculture 2010-2011

This edition of The State of Food and Agriculture makes the “business case” for addressing gender issues in agriculture and rural employment. The agriculture sector is underperforming in many developing countries, in part because women do not have equal access to the resources and opportunities they need to be more productive. The gender gap imposes real costs on society in terms of lost agricultural output, food security and economic growth. Promoting gender equality is not only good for women; it is also good for agricultural development.

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Closing the gender gap in agriculture and rural employment

Closing the gender gap in agriculture is not an easy task, but progress can be made and simple interventions can sometimes be very powerful. Carefully designed policies, strategies and projects can work within existing cultural norms, through the public and private sectors, in ways that benefit both women and men (Box 9). Specific recommendations for closing the gender gap in access to land, rural labour markets, financial services, social capital and technology include the steps outlined below.

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