Strengthening women’s control of assets for better development outcomes

Despite evidence that strengthening women’s asset holdings is critical
to several development outcomes—including food security, child nutrition, education, and women’s well-being—a substantial asset gap remains between men and women. Recognizing the importance of this issue, the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) initiated a new research program in 2007, “Strengthening Women’s Control of Assets for Better Development Outcomes,” which is jointly led by the Institute’s Environment and Production Technology Division (EPTD) and Poverty, Health and Nutrition Division (PHND). The program adopts a broad definition of assets to include natural and physical capital, as well as human, social, and political capital. The research aims, first, to document gender disparities in asset control and barriers to reducing these gaps; second, to understand the impact of these disparities on poverty; and, third, to identify effective policy interventions to close the gender gap in assets. The approach incorporates wideranging policy interventions and policy linkages across sectors; the impacts of targeted gender programs; and how overarching trends, such as migration, rural–urban linkages, and the changing landscape of financial services, affect women’s abilities to acquire and derive benefits from assets.

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International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
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