Intergenerational Relations and Family-based Securities 

Esther Njunga-Mungai, CGIAR GENDER Platform, International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI)


Nozomi Kawarazuka, International Potato Center (CIP)

Agriculture in intergenerational relations: Ethnic Thai youth in northern Vietnam
In Southeast Asia, the family system, rather than the state system, fulfills a vital role in maintaining well-being of rural households. Drawing on the concept of intergenerational relations, this study illustrates gendered experiences of a youth transition period with a specific focus on the interactions of youth with parents and parents-in-law through agriculture. Findings show that intergenerational reciprocal support plays significant roles as safety nets for young married couples, even though men are often absent from the rural village, looking for casual labor work outside the village. Young men access cash, goods and services from their kin in exchange for unpaid labor in farming. Women take major responsibility for farming, animal husbandry and domestic work to support their parents-in-law through which they eventually utilize agricultural resources to their own benefits. The economic focus of research on agriculture as a source of income masks this important aspect of agriculture within ethnic minority communities. Unpaid youth labor in agriculture should be viewed as more than a simple problem of youth unemployment or a lack of individual skills. Instead, gendered experiences of ethnically marginalized youth should be reflected in relevant policies and agenda settings to support agricultural development.


Isabel Lambrecht, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)

Gender and youth in Myanmar agriculture: some facts
Agriculture is often stereotyped as a men’s sector, and the sector is further problematized as one in which youth is not interested and farmers are increasingly older. Perceptions do not always coincide with the reality though, and effective policy making and design of interventions related to agriculture should be guided by ‘facts’ rather ‘myths’. In this paper, we strive to bring objective, quantitative documentation of women’s and youth’s involvement in agriculture in rural Myanmar. To do so, we perform a descriptive analysis of rural adults based on a nationally representative survey. First, we focus on employment patterns in rural areas, and on employment in agriculture in particular. We show that women and youth contribute substantially to agriculture, but that there’s a small gender gap in participation and a large gender wage gap. Second, we focus on women’s and youth’s access to farmland, a key prerequisite for own-farming in a country where rental markets are scarce. Households are more likely to own land as the household head ages. In landholding households, the household head is considered the owner, either solely or jointly with a spouse, though mostly as representative of the household rather than as sole decisionmaker. Third, we explore cropping patterns and gender: are certain crops more often grown by women than men? Are certain crops more appealing to young farmers? If such patterns exist, they offer quick entry points for policies and interventions that aim to support youth or women farmers.


Laudemira Silva Rabelo, Research Institute in Meteorology and Water Resources (FUNCEME)

The invisibility of young people in family farming: A gender perspective in the semiarid region of Ceará, Brazil.
The migration of the children of family farmers in the semi-arid region of North-eastern Brazil reveals new challenges, especially for girls and women, who seek visibility for their multiple roles in society. This article brings an analysis of the factors that contribute to this process of mobility, in view of the variable’s youth and gender. The Systemic Participatory Rapid Diagnosis method was used, with interview techniques and questionnaire application, in two sub-basins located in the hinterland of the state of Ceará, Brazil, in the temporal period of 2019 and 2020. The research revealed that migration is justified by the inequality in social relations. Faced with the invisibility of their productive and reproductive work in family farming, girls and women seek means of living in the city that allow them a well-being not made possible in the rural territory. If these desired migrations, by today's young women, become a reality, a new format of family farming will be designed in the territory, including the accentuation of gender inequalities.


Francois Iradukunda, Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT, and University of Antwerp, Belgium

Men's rural-to-urban migration in Burundi, and how it affects their wives’ voice and agency in farming and their banana plantations
In Burundi, rural-to-urban migration is a rapidly increasing phenomenon. Most villagers migrate to the capital Bujumbura which has seen its population increasing from 497,166 in 2008 to 743,514 in 2020. Especially in northern Burundi male out-migration is common; up to one-third of male household heads was recorded to move away, usually leaving their wife and children behind in the village. Little is known about how this male out migration affects farming; crop management; investment in farming and revenue; crop choice etc. nor about how the household and particularly women, are affected when their husbands move away. This study aims to shed light on these issues by studying both male migrants and their rural households and farms. We will particularly focus on farm decision-making, labour allocations, women’s voice and agency, and possible changes in the farm systems of ‘migrant’ households. With regards to farming, we focus on the banana crop and plantation. Banana is not only an important cash and staple crop in Northern Burundi, the plantation, which is semi-perennial, also represents standing capital and social status and is traditionally controlled by men. We take a case-study approach, using mostly qualitative methods such as individual semi-structured interviews with male migrants and their rural-based wives and field (plantation) observations. The fieldwork will be conducted over the next two months. This study is part of the Master thesis project of the lead author.