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Poverty and Equity

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The CA examines in depth the cross-cutting issues of poverty and gender in water management in agriculture. The main challenge of the CA is to provide supporting evidence for critical state-of-the-art issues regarding interactions of poverty and agricultural water management practices over the past 50 years, as well as current challenges, potential solutions and response options. It also aim to gain a sound understanding of the current situation of gender in relation to diverse water management systems (irrigated and rainfed systems, fishery, etc). It will also demonstrate why it is crucial to integrate a gendered perspective in water policy, water management and water projects as well as to illustrate the consequences of ignoring such a perspective. Gender experts, researchers and practitioners are all invited to contribute their knowledge and experiences to assist in this process.

The work on poverty and gender is coordinated by Gina Castillo (Novib – Oxfam Netherlands) supported by a network of experts.

Some of the critical questions to be addressed:

1) What are the critical trends and processes impacting on poverty from current water  management practices in agriculture?

2) How can water for food be developed and managed for poverty eradication and food security?  What investments have had an impact on poverty and why?  (e.g. has irrigation impacted poverty, how and how much?) What are the lessons learned from these?

3) How are water management policies and practices addressing livelihood activities of   poor communities? (eg. food production, income generation, sanitation and health, environment).

4) How are current water management policies and practices in agriculture addressing gender and social inequalities? 

A participatory writing process

The preparation of the chapter on Poverty is based on an intensive participatory and consultative process.

  • A group of experts met 31 May to 2 June 2005 in Montpellier, France to discuss the key issues and messages that should be adressed in that chapter on the "water management in agriculture and poverty". Read Report
  • online discussion 20 july to 8 august to consult a large group of people from different background and expertises on the key issues and messages identified in the poverty chapter outline above.