CGIAR Gender News

Invest in women, ignite change in food systems

Women farmers in Jawahar, India Photo: J. Turner/CCAFS.

On this International Women’s Day, we celebrate women’s ability to accelerate progress and their central role in transforming our faltering food systems.

Around the world, it is often women at the center of making decisions about what the family eats: what gets cooked and what gets served. Women play an equally important but less recognized role in agricultural production. Quite simply, we cannot talk about food and nutrition security without discussing gender equality. 

However, in an era marked by unprecedented challenges, including the climate crisis, conflicts, post-pandemic recovery, and soaring costs of living, progress in gender equality is faltering and, in some cases, reversing. The stark reality is that, at the current pace, achieving gender equality will take nearly 300 years without additional investment.  

A 2023 estimate suggests an extra $360 billion annually is required to achieve gender equality and empower women across key global goals by 2030. On International Women’s Day 2024, UN Women is rallying development actors to heed the call to “Invest in women: Accelerate progress.” CGIAR, through its GENDER Impact Platform, aligns with this initiative, emphasizing the crucial need for and benefits of investing in women’s access to finance, economic empowerment, and agricultural solutions that work for women. 

Critical areas to focus on include:  

  1. Investing in Making Finance Available to Women, Youth, and Indigenous Peoples 
  2. Investing in Women’s Economic Empowerment 
  3. Investing in Agricultural Solutions that Work for Women