Climate resilient and empowering livelihoods for women


Bangladesh is known to be as one of the countries that is most vulnerable to the effects of climate change. This document investigates the use of community-based organizations and community-generated adaptation as a viable means of shaping livelihoods that empower women who can create resilient families that make communities resilient to climate change and climate variability. The authors investigate institutional adaptations that have been undertaken in Bangladesh since 2000. They argue that these have had limited success, particularly for women, who remain disproportionately vulnerable to climate change. However, current practices by communities themselves and by NGOs working with them demonstrate that there are a number of traditional and innovative measures that give rise to alternative income generation. Traditional measures are slightly modified to suit local vulnerability and local conditions. Rather than focusing on technological fixes, emphasis is attached to simple improvisations using traditional knowledge and locally available tools so that the larger majority of the uneducated farming households can adopt techniques that will help them combat the increasing climate variability and extremes and simultaneously ensure income. Since poverty is perceived to be the primary concern, these kinds of adaptive measures help maintain access to various forms of assets (streams of services and goods), enabling the participating households to build resilience. Many of these activities are innovative, simple, easy to use, able to be replicated, socially accepted, environmentally suitable, and are non-destructive. [This summary was provided by the CGIAR GENDER Impact Platform]