ANEW way forward: Strategies to promote women’s empowerment in farmer producer organizations

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BY JESSICA HECKERT, KALYANI RAGHUNATHAN, AGNES QUISUMBING, EMMA FAWCETT, EMILY MYERS, FLOR PAZ, AND SOUMYAJIT RAY
OPEN ACCESS | CC-BY-4.0

Women’s empowerment is both intrinsically important and instrumental to achieving agricultural development goals such as Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Target 2.3, which seeks to increase agricultural productivity among smallholders. In line with SDG 5’s focus on gender equality and women’s empowerment, many agricultural development projects now explicitly include women’s empowerment objectives.

But what are the optimal ways to challenge gender norms and foster women’s empowerment while increasing smallholder incomes? This remains an open question. Engaging with agricultural collectives—producer groups and farmer producer organizations (FPOs)—is one promising approach for addressing these challenges. As a result, understanding how agricultural collectives can improve women’s empowerment is a developing research area.

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