Leveraging change: How gender norms matter for development

Cynthia McDougall -

Small-scale fisheries, Tonle Sap, Cambodia

In a keynote at the CGIAR Integrated Systems Research Conference earlier this year, I suggested that researchers might look at gender as a leverage point in development. This idea comes from systems thinking, which is—in very simplest terms—a way of approaching an issue that sees the “thing being studied” as part of a larger set of elements that interact in multiple ways to shape outcomes.

Why women in agricultural science is good for development?

Vicki Wilde -

Woman taking notes at her farm in Khulna, Bangladesh.

Vicki Wilde, Senior Program Officer at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation guest blogs about the challenges and inequalities that continue to face women scientists.

There is no shortage of literature, both academic and mass media, documenting the importance of women’s advancement in the sciences, including the agricultural sciences. Bringing more women into scientific careers serves to do more than symbolically close a gender gap. It brings a wider variety of experiences and views that can greatly benefit scientific research and development as well as society.

Listen, someone important is trying to tell us something

Stephen Hall -


What do you learn when you ask people about their personal experiences with international assistance efforts and make a genuine effort to listen to their answers? What do they say when you ask which approaches have been most effective and which not? What does that tell us about how things should change? I read “Time to Listen: Hearing People on the Receiving End of International Aid” and found answers to these questions.