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Partners : Partners: Papua New Guinea
PARTNERS SPRING 2012 29 Global Conference on Women in Agriculture held in New Delhi, India, from 13 to 15 March 2012. Women in agriculture BY PAUL JONES Maria Linibi is the founder and president of Papua New Guinea (PNG) Women in Agriculture, a non-profit organisation for women across all areas of agriculture. She says 85% of women in the country are involved in agriculture and the idea behind the group is to raise the profile of women in agriculture across primary production, rural industries and communities in PNG. She says the patriarchal social structure in PNG is the biggest issue facing women. "We help women in fisheries, in agroforestry, in bee keeping, in horticulture, in livestock, in agrotourism," Maria Linibi says. "Yes, women are taking the initiative in PNG. "There's a lot of undermining by the men, there's a lot of pressure, there's a lot of women who do most of the labour work and sometimes the women are forgotten." Maria Linibi says some women take on management roles but, in the end, the men decide where the money is spent. But she says the attitude is changing, with some men letting women take leadership roles in the family. Global conference on women in agriculture BY MANDY GYLES ACIAR sponsored six women involved in ACIAR projects---including two from Papua New Guinea (PNG)---to attend the Global Conference on Women in Agriculture held in New Delhi, India, from 13 to 15 March 2012. Themed 'Empowering Women for Inclusive Growth in Agriculture', the conference was organised by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research and the Asia Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions (APAARI). About 300 delegates attended the conference, which was inaugurated by the President of India, Her Excellency Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil. ACIAR's principal adviser Simon Hearn, who is on the APAARI executive committee, chaired a session at the conference. The conference had the following themes: 1. assessing women's empowerment in agriculture; 2. agricultural innovations for reducing drudgery; 3. linking women to markets; 4. the role of women in household food and nutritional security; 5. access to assets, resources and knowledge: policies and services; and 6. impact of and responses to climate change related risks and uncertainties. The ACIAR-sponsored delegates were: n Silinthone Sacklokham---head of department of Rural Economics, National University of Laos; n Norah Omot---senior researcher, PNG National Agricultural Research Institute; n Lilly Sar--- Communication and Development Studies, PNG University of Technology; n Felister Makini---deputy director, Outreach and Partnerships, Kenya Agricultural Research Institute; n Jemimah Njuki---team leader, Poverty and Gender, International Livestock Research Institute, Kenya; and n Atien Priyanti---Indonesian Center for Animal Science Research and Development. the nation's most significant industries and supports up to 85% of the population. It was a great pleasure to meet with a group of PNG's leading female agricultural researchers, many of whom are valued partners of ACIAR." During his meeting with the agricultural researchers at the Australian High Commission in Port Moresby, Richard Marles also had the opportunity to view a photo collection featuring images taken by photographer Paul Jones during a visit to ACIAR's PNG projects (which can also be viewed on the ACIAR website). The women---mainly researchers at the PNG National Agricultural Research Institute (NARI)---along with private sector and industry bodies are delivering improvements in agricultural production and marketing. The main strategy of ACIAR's program in PNG is to secure improvements in food supply and rural incomes for smallholder farmers. The ACIAR program also has a project that specifically examines the role and effectiveness of women's groups in rural industries, in terms of efficiency and equity in agricultural and marketing systems. n
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