On 22 March 2018, the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics (DAAE) of the College of Economics and Management (CEM) hosted a CEM Seminar Series on gender-related issues in agriculture. The resource speaker is Dr. Thelma R. Paris, a former IRRI gender specialist and consultant. She gave a lecture on “Incorporating a Gender Perspective in Agricultural Research for Development.”
Dr. Paris described the importance of agriculture and emphasized the significant roles of women in rice-based farming. More often than not, women’s roles are being disregarded in production and decision-making both in household and farm-related matters. These unpaid labor and unrecognized efforts of women are, in fact, valuable to the farm production. The pressing issues on gender, especially in agriculture, are now being recognized globally. These were demonstrated through the cases of South Asia and South-East Asian countries. Women, especially in rural areas, are forced to assume the roles of men in farming due to the increasing male out-migration. Other major threats to agriculture raised are labor displacement due to technology innovations and mechanization, depleting and ageing population of farmers, natural disasters, and climate change.
Social- and cultural-dictated awareness on women should be displaced by positive perceptions regarding their participation in farm-related activities, according to Dr. Paris. Social policy makers need to recognize the essential roles of women and address gender issues. Moreover, technological innovations need not be gender bias, so women’s impact on agricultural production will be recognized.
The lecture took place at the REDREC Auditorium, CEM, UPLB and attended by around 200 faculty, staff and students. SSPasia and IMPabuayon