CGIAR Gender

New investments to further delve into the causes of gender disparity in agriculture

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awards an international team of CGIAR researchers a $1.1 million grant to further delve into the causes of gender disparity in agriculture.

El Batan, Mexico, March 1, 2016

This grant adds to the investments of 11 CGIAR Research Programs (CRPs), the Government of Mexico; the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ); the World Bank and the CGIAR Consortium office, to support an international collaborative research initiative known as “GENNOVATE: enabling gender equality in agricultural and environmental innovation.”

The project engages gender and social development specialists with 11 CRPs to identify practical actions which can strengthen the ability of agricultural research for development organizations to support poor rural women, men and youth to expand their power and capacity to access, use and benefit from improved agricultural and natural resource management technologies and practices.

The initiative, which employs comparative qualitative research techniques, is advancing a new conceptual and methodological approach to illuminating how gender norms— i.e. the rules prescribing men’s and women’s expected roles and behaviors in their society – influence the ability of local people; men, women and youth; to utilize innovative methods in their agricultural and natural-resource based livelihoods. This unprecedented  research collaboration across CGIAR has now mobilized fieldwork in more than 135 rural communities in 26 countries across Asia, Africa and Latin America, drawing on the views and experiences of nearly 8,000 rural women and men of different ages and socio-economic groups.

 “GENNOVATE will provide new evidence on how agricultural development processes are constrained by gender inequalities on the ground.  Importantly, we will be able to compare these processes across the very diverse contexts reached by our field teams, and learn from those cases where both poor women and men demonstrate strong capacities for agricultural innovation—and in this process catalyze greater gender equality within their households and communities and higher farm yields. In this way, GENNOVATE contributes directly to the momentum and spirit embodied by International Women’s Day.”  –  Lone Badstue, GENNOVATE project leader and strategic leader for gender research,  International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT).

For more information please contact: 

Genevieve Renard
Head of Communications
CIMMYT, Mexico
Tel: +52 (1) 595 95 21900 ext: 2019

About the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT)

CIMMYT ,the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center ­ is the global leader in publicly-funded maize and wheat research and related farming systems. Headquartered near Mexico City, CIMMYT works with hundreds of partners throughout the developing world to sustainably increase the productivity of maize and wheat cropping systems, thus improving global food security and reducing poverty. CIMMYT is a member of the CGIAR Consortium and leads the CGIAR Research Programs on MAIZE and WHEAT. The Center receives support from national governments, foundations, development banks and other public and private agencies. For more information about CIMMYT see:


GENNOVATE is a cross-CGIAR Research Program, global comparative research initiative which addresses the question of how gender norms and agency influence men, women and youth to adopt innovation in agriculture and natural resource management (NRM). Carried out across 135 rural communities in 26 countries, this qualitative comparative study aims to provide authoritative “bottom-up” research to advance gender-transformative approaches and catalyze change in international agricultural and NRM research for development. For more information, visit

Note: this press release has been slightly amended from the original document which was posted on It can be found here.