To strengthen the capacities of the Product Line Coordinators of the CGIAR Research Programs on Dryland Cereals and on Grain Legumes; and for senior scientists of ICRISAT to mainstream and integrate gender into their work plans and activities, a training workshop was organized between 9-13 December in Hyderabad.

The training conducted over five days was based on four modules that helped the participants to understand gender as a social construct, and also introduced them to different tools, methods and process for developing results, activities and inputs and monitoring & evaluation. The participants also went on a field visit to Adarsha Watershed in Kothapally village of Ranga Reddy district to practically test these tools and to understand the gender related issues directly from the farmers through group discussions.

Participants of the Gender Integrated Planning workshop during field visit at the Adarsha Watershed in Kothapally village

Participants of the Gender Integrated Planning workshop during field visit at the Adarsha Watershed in Kothapally village

“The workshop was important not only from the CGIAR Research Program point of view where we are expected by the Consortium Office and Fund Council to integrate gender in all our priorities and activities to contribute towards a genuine positive impact in closing the gender inequality gap but also more importantly to make their work genuinely impactful at the ground level,” said Dr Chanda Goodrich, Principal Scientist, Empower Women. She along with Dr Barun Gurung, former Director, PRGA (System-wide Program for Participatory Research and Gender Analysis, CIAT) and with Ms Sweta Agrawal of ICRISAT led the training program.

“Integration of gender balancing strategies within research for development is important for maximum adoption of research outputs, and consequently for the delivery of outcomes, from the CGIAR Research Programs on Grain Legumes and on Dryland Cereals,” said Dr Shoba Sivasankar, Director, CGIAR Research Program on Dryland Cereals.

“Twelve participants including seven RMC members from both the research programs attended the training. This demonstrates the current interest in increasing our understanding of and engagement with the gender issues that underlie both research programs,” said Dr Noel Ellis, Director, CGIAR Research Program on Grain Legumes.

“The field trip was very interesting and the way in which the women and men farmers were responding to the participants was amazing. It was a two-way process; even the farmers asked interesting questions to the participants,” said Ms Sweta Agrawal.

The participants felt that the training provided them a systematic approach to include gender aspects while developing and implementing projects.

The two CGIAR Research Programs led by ICRISAT recently submitted their Gender Strategies to the Consortium Office.