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Publication Overview

How to Improve Gender Equality in Agriculture: Investment in Agriculture Policy Brief #5

Women and men have not benefited equally from the increased trade of agricultural commodities and the rise of foreign investment in agriculture.

Gender inequalities in agriculture persist in the 21st century, and tend to be exacerbated by trade and foreign investment. Two broad agendas have emerged in response to global calls for more sustainable trade and more responsible investment in agriculture. The first, largely targeted at the private sector, are represented by the array of voluntary sustainability standards (VSS), such as fair trade labels. The second, largely targeted at governments, are the multitude of guidelines on responsible investment in agriculture, such as the Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests (VGGTs).

In this policy brief, we explore how global standards and guidelines contribute to gender equality and women’s empowerment, and whether more can be done through these instruments to improve the situation of women in agriculture.