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Gender Equality Mainstreaming Digest – December 2019 Issue

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

Freshly fallen snow in forest in early winter. Photo courtesy of D. Ceplis.


Opportunities and Upcoming Events:

FIT Workshop on developing testing frameworks

Fund for Innovation and Transformation is hosting an online workshop on developing testing frameworks on Thursday December 5th. The workshop will be in French at 10:30 am CST and English at 12 pm CST.

We’ll be covering all the key steps in the testing process, including developing a testing mindset, stakeholder mapping, choosing outcomes and indicators, creating feedback schedules and more! If you’re applying to FIT, this is a great opportunity learn more about innovation testing as you work on your concept note submission.

The Fund for Innovation and Transformation (FIT) is a program of the Inter-Council Network of Provincial and Regional Councils (ICN) made possible through funding from Global Affairs Canada and administered by Manitoba Council for International Cooperation (MCIC).

The initiative is designed to support Canadian small and medium-sized organizations (SMOs) testing innovative solutions to specific development challenges that focus on advancing gender equality and empowering women and girls in the Global South. In addition, the program seeks to foster collective learning and build the capacity of SMOs through the creation of knowledge-sharing spaces and practices.

Advancing Women in Ag Conference 2020 – West

Mark your calendar and save the date of the upcoming AWC WEST 2020 being held on March 23 & 24, 2020 in Calgary. This 12th conference in the series to Advancing Women in Agriculture will help you re-energize, re-charge and re-focus as we get ready for Spring.

This Month’s News:

Sexism in science: The woman who pioneered giraffe research

Before Jane Goodall began her study of chimpanzees, there was Anne Innis Dagg. She’s a Canadian and the first to conduct scientific studies of giraffes, or any large mammal, in the wild. She was a young researcher, working on her own in Africa in the late 1950s. Her observations about the behaviour of giraffes laid the foundation for all future giraffe studies. In the 1970s, despite her extensive qualifications, she was denied tenure at several Ontario universities, which effectively ended her giraffe research and academic career. Instead of giving up, Anne became an activist for women’s rights, especially in academia. She taught part-time and published books but didn’t get the support or recognition she deserved until the scientific community rediscovered her and raised her profile. Now there’s a film about her life, and several universities are trying to make up for their rejection. She’s received many awards and will soon hear whether she will be a recipient of the Order of Canada.

First-ever female engineer hired by John Deere still blazing a trail for women in agriculture

Almost four decades ago Debra Harrison was the first female engineer ever hired by John Deere. Today she is president of John Deere Canada. She recalls being the only woman among 650 engineers at an engineering conference early in her career. Harrison also comments on how the landscape for women in agriculture has changed since she entered the workforce in 1980. But there’s still work to be done. Harrison believes young women entering the work force will likely experience negativity and exclusion at some point in their career. However, she believes young women can and should prepare for these conflicts and tackle them with confidence when they arise. Video and interview available at the website.

Reports Publications and Resources:

Infographic: Putting a Gender Lens on Global Food Insecurity


Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index

The Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index (WEAI) is an aggregate index, reported at the country or regional level, based on individual-level data collected by interviewing men and women within the same households. The WEAI comprises two sub-indices. The first assesses the degree to which respondents are empowered in five domains of empowerment (5DE) in agriculture. It reflects the percentage of women and men who are empowered and, among those who are not, the percentage of domains in which they enjoy adequate achievements.

Various versions are available now.

WEAI: was piloted in 2011 in Uganda, Bangladesh, and Guatemala and was formally launched in 2012.

Abbreviated WEAI (A-WEAI)

Project-level WEAI (pro-WEAI)

WEAI for Value Chains (WEAI4VC) is currently being developed to measure empowerment across the value chain.

Fostering women with migrant background to consolidate their careers in STEM

EUMENTORSTEM seeks to foster the performance, learning and development of women with migrant background to consolidate their career in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) jobs in Europe (as paid employees or as entrepreneurs), by developing and testing innovative materials on mentoring and coaching (M&C) in STEM for migrant women and their career advisors/educators, shared in an online European knowledge hub in all partner languages.

The project takes into account three critical intersections in Europe:

  • the increasing influx of migrants
  • the gender gap in STEM-related jobs
  • the double disadvantage faced by highly skilled migrant women in the labour markets.

In the virtual hub you can find two training kits (EUMentoring): one for trainers (who work with migrant people, in particular, women) and one for migrant women (learners) to help them to improve their soft skills. Trainer’s Kit and Learner’s Kit are both available in 5 different languages (English, Swedish, Italian, Greek, Hungarian), so individuals and organizations can autonomously repeat the trainings or be inspired by them. Anyone can create an account for the Virtual Hub, so (s)he can have access to all the available material.

The virtual hub is open access. The main focus in Europe since it is a European project.

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