By Natalia Jame
O índice das mulheres envolvidas na área agrícola é muito reduzido, essa é a questão que foi discutida na secção levada a cabo pela INNOVATE, no âmbito da conferência do RUFORUM. A discussão tinha como objectivo entender os motivos que estão por detrás dos números reduzidos das mulheres nesta área, partilhar experiências com relação a mulheres envolvidas na área, discutir e propor soluções para inverter a situação.
Durante a sessão, a moderadora Emily Van Houweling trouxe alguns dados sobre a inclusão das mulheres na agricultura nomeadamente: 20% de pesquisadores na área agrícola são mulheres; Menos de um quarto das mulheres fazem algum curso relacionado a agricultura nas faculdades; Dá-se pouca atenção ao papel, necessidades e prioridades das mulheres na agricultura, a questão da mulher desempenhar um papel vital na agricultura é pobremente representado nos programas de educação em agricultura. Read More
There is nothing more physically debilitating and emotionally demoralising to the budding writer than being confronted with an ominous void of a laptop screen. One can almost tangibly feel the will to live seeping slowly away at the prospect of filling the screen with informed, meaningful, coherent and succinct text. It is the literary equivalent of hitting ‘the wall’ – but from the outset rather than after 20 miles!
This challenge equally applies to graduate agricultural students. In an era of constrained global funding opportunities, graduates must be capable of developing well written grant proposals if they are to have a chance of being successful.
But the academic credibility and reputation necessary to underpin those applications must be informed by a track record of completed research projects and their successful write-up and dissemination, ideally in respected peer-reviewed journals where established, critical peers have decided it merits publication. Read More
Victoria Mbigidde, Catherine Mloza
Economists say that land, labor and capital are the key factors for production without which a farmer, small or large cannot do without. This is true and by far undisputed. However, over the past two decades, it is increasingly becoming apparent that knowledge is also a critical factor that can determine or affect in some way, agricultural productivity.
For arguments’ sake, as an example, let us consider a woman in a rural community in Africa, who cultivates maize on 1 acre of her family land. Her area is frequently hit by drought which causes her and others in her village to re-plant 2 to 3 times in a cropping season. In addition, maize does not do too well on the market. Her children, who are her major source of labor have all grown up and some migrated to the city, leaving her and her ill husband, more or less on their own. How does this woman diversify her farming in such a way that it becomes more profitable on the market and more resilient to a changing climate? In addition, what should she do to increase her productivity per unit area in spite of the labor reduction she has experienced? Can she grow crops that are more nutritious to feed her ill husband? Read More