Ranjitha Puskur guest blogs on International Women’s Day about the need for gender equality for rural women in agriculture. We are living in an increasingly unequal world. A recent UNDP report entitled ‘Humanity Divided’notes that while Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita in low- and middle-income countries has doubled since 1990, more than 1.2 billion people continue to live in extreme poverty.
Researchers, development practitioners and policy makers recognise that efforts during the 1970's and 80's to develop new high yielding hybrid seeds and transfer them to farmers played an important part in removing the spectre of widespread starvation, especially in Asia. This, combined with the introduction of fertiliser and efforts to develop markets, also ushered in a period of cheap and relatively stable prices for the world's staple crops and brought millions of farmers out of poverty. Aptly named The Green Revolution this undoubted success deserves celebration.
For any organization trying to decide how best to achieve development impact, a good place to start is with a ‘Theory of Change’, or ToC. Formally defined as “a statement of the interconnected causal pathways that describe the types of interventions that bring about desired outcomes” , a ToC can be more plainly said to be a description of what you need to do to make a difference.