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Gender Equality Mainstreaming Digest – April 2020 Issue

Here are the highlights of this month’s Gender Equality Mainstreaming Digest! Click HERE for the full version.

Wild Canada geese returning in spring to farm field from southern migration. Photo courtesy of D. Ceplis.


Opportunities and Upcoming Events:

Many events are being cancelled or re-scheduled at the last minute due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Please check each organization’s website or its social media site for up to date information.

Webinar: Connecting STEM to Indigenous Science

Wednesday, April 29th, 2020, 7:30–8:30 p.m. EST

From Green Teacher: The resulting Indigenous Arts and Sciences (IAS) is an approach to environmental science education that engages Indigenous wisdom and scientific processes rooted in respect and reciprocity. While these are distinct from the more linear and chronological traditions of Western science, there are intersections at which Western sciences and Traditional ecological knowledge can meet and interact with one another to their mutual benefit.

This webinar is a story about Earth Partnership’s Indigenous Arts and Sciences—how it began, how our collaboration works, and what we have learned (and are still learning) along the way.

Canadian Agri-Business Education Foundation Scholarships

The Canadian Agri-Business Education Foundation (CABEF) awards seven $2,500 scholarships annually to Canadian students who are entering or currently pursuing an agricultural-related program at a Canadian college, university or apprenticeship (trade) institution.

Applications are due April 30, 2020.

This Month’s News:

Bibeau marks first anniversary in agriculture portfolio

Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Marie Claude Bibeau marked her first anniversary in the portfolio. While Bibeau was not involved in the agricultural industry prior to entering the political arena, her riding is in the heart of Quebec farming country and she very quickly found herself as a voice supporting supply management at the cabinet table.

The federal minister said she will be announcing the make-up shortly for the first-ever Canadian Agricultural Youth Council. She unveiled plans to create the council last year and had been hoping to announce the membership at the forum. However, over 800 applications were received to sit on the group and it is taking more time than expected.

Where Are All the Women in Science and Research?

Gender parity in science and research is a crucial step towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Gender parity in science would be a major contribution to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 5 (SDG 5): achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls. It would also support SDG 9, which promotes innovation and SDG 17, which promotes statistical capacity building to meet the pressing need for more and better data.

It seems that the challenges facing women in science and research often intensify as they progress in their chosen field. UIS data show three major gender gaps.

  • First, young women are less likely to continue their studies to the doctorate level – even though they are more likely than young men to gain Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in science and research worldwide.
  • Second, women who become scientists are less likely than men to remain scientists.
  • Third, women scientists and researchers are more likely to work in academia or the public sector while men are more likely to work in the private sector, which offers higher salaries and greater opportunities.

Northerners discuss farming while female

Speakers on the “Women in Northern Ontario Agriculture” panel at the recent Northern Ontario Ag Conference in Sudbury talked about the expanding role for women in agriculture, the challenges of farming while female, and offered advice for both new and veteran farmers.

Organized by the Northern Ontario Farm Innovation Alliance (NOFIA), the conference drew about 120 people from across the province.

Farm CEO: Women farm executives

Women make great farm CEOs. Studies are showing that women have a lot to offer as executive decision-makers, and the reason why has some lessons to teach agriculture about what are the most valuable professional competencies needed on the farm, and why.

What does the research say? One global study showed that women hold about 38 per cent of senior leadership positions. What the study also showed, however, is that when they focused on identifying the most effective leaders within the sample group, women showed up at 52 per cent.

The skill set of a top farm CEO is shifting to a balance between technical and relational competencies.

Reports Publications and Resources:

Bending the Curve Towards Gender Equality by 2030

Bending the Curve uses five of the key gender equality issues in the 2019 SDG Gender Index (sexual and reproductive health and rights, girls’ education, representation of women in leadership, laws on equality in the workplace, and safety) to answer questions about the pace and nature of change towards gender equality. Are countries moving towards greater equality or in the wrong direction? What are the prospects for bending the curve to reach the gender equality promises laid out in the SDGs by 2030?

The analysis finds that 67 countries – home to 2.1 billion girls and women – won’t achieve any of the gender equality targets by 2030 if their current pace of change continues. More than a third of countries studied have been moving slowly – or even in the wrong direction – on at least four of the five issues over the past decade or two.

Whitepaper: Mitigating unconscious biases at work to promote female leadership.

The past year has been an important one for our Women Transforming the Workplace program. In our ninth year of existence since launching in 2011, we’re exploring how unconscious biases impact women at work. In late 2019, we analyzed the topic of unconscious bias in the workplace in depth, through a survey of 1,000 women and 1,000 men in Canada. We shared the insights that emerged across the country.

This recently published report identifies the following:

  • how unconscious biases affect women at work
  • rethinking current solutions to reduce biases
  • forward-thinking solutions to promote female leadership
  • key findings from our survey about unconscious biases

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