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Strengthening rural institutions and empowering people to reduce poverty and inequalities

This brochure provides an overview of FAO's work on Rural Institutions, Services and Empowerment, notably in regard to the challenges and ways forward for tackling hunger, malnutrition and food insecurity from social, territorial, financial and institutional perspectives. FAO's work in these areas aims to unlock the development potential of rural areas, reduce inequalities, promote inclusive finance and advisory service systems and contribute to socio-economic empowerment of rural women and men. 



Developing gender-sensitive value chains. Guidelines for practitioners

The publication complements the FAO Guiding Framework on gender-sensitive value chain development by providing practical tools and examples of successful approaches to address the gender-based constraints that affect agrifood value chains. The guidelines are intended to assist practitioners in integrating gender equality dimensions more effectively in the design and implementation of value chain interventions in the agricultural sector. See also: Developing Gender-Sensitive Value Chains. A Guiding Framework

Issue paper


Legal pluralism, women’s land rights and gender equality in Mozambique. Harmonizing statutory and customary law. FAO legal papers No.104

Throughout history, land has been considered a main source of wealth, social status and power. This publication analyses the impacts of legal pluralism on women's land rights in Mozambique arguing that despite Mozambique's progressive legal framework, efforts are still needed to fully achieve gender equitable and socially just outcomes on the ground. With a largely rural population, and limited knowledge of statutory law, customary rules that are discriminatory towards women tend to prevail over the gender sensitive statutory law, undermining women's land rights. Based on FAO field experiences in Mozambique, the document presents the realities of customary justice and challenges faced [...]

Issue paper


Water accounting & auditing guidelines. A sourcebook. FAO Water report 43

In many regions of the world, sustainable and reliable delivery of water services has become increasingly complex and problematic. Complexities that are very likely to increase, considering the unprecedented confluence of pressures linked to demographic, economic, dietary trends, and climate change. Particularly if overall demand for freshwater exceeds supply, the delivery of water services is often less about engineering, although engineering is still required, and more about politics, governa nce, managing and protecting sources, resolving conflicts about water, ensuring rights to water are respected, and so on. It is also about understanding and monitoring the hydrological cycle at the appropriate scale [...]

Issue paper


Meeting our goals. FAO's programme for gender equality in agriculture and rural development

FAO recognizes the potential of rural women and men in achieving food security and nutrition and is committed to overcoming gender inequality, in line with the pledge to “leave no one behind”, which is at the heart of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the 2030 Agenda. The publication illustrates the consistent and sustained work of FAO towards gender equality and women’s empowerment, which are at the core of the Organization’s work to eliminate hunger and rural poverty. Each chapter highlights the relevance of gender work to achieving the FAO Strategic Objectives, and describes main results achieved, showcasing activities implemented [...]



Governance (Country level)

Governance work seeks to clarify and address the underlying political dynamics of decision making processes in order to arrive at workable solutions. Klaus Urban, Senior Officer (Governance and Institutions) of the FAO Economic and Social Development Department together with Dubravka Bojic, Programme Officer (Governance and Policy) explain how FAO works at all levels of governance—national, regional and global—to improve capacities for effective collective action and to solve problems as diverse as ending hunger, malnutrition and poverty; minimizing climate change; enabling transition to sustainable agriculture and sustainable use of natural resources; ensuring the health and safety of food and agriculture systems; and [...]



Adopting a Territorial Approach to Food Security and Nutrition Policy

The calls for action are numerous: at the United Nations Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development in September 2012, governments reaffirmed the fundamental right of everyone to be free from hunger. The same year, the UN Secretary General launched the “Zero Hunger Challenge” campaign to end hunger globally. The United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, endorsed in September 2015, confirms the importance of achieving food security, and eradicating hunger is the second Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 2). Since 1990, much progress has been made in reducing hunger. Yet, challenges to food security and nutrition remain as pressing as ever. Around [...]



FAO Policy on Indigenous and Tribal Peoples

Consistent with its mandate to pursue a world free from hunger and malnutrition, the following “FAO Policy on Indigenous and Tribal Peoples” has been formulated so as to ensure that FAO will make all due efforts to respect, include and promote indigenous issues in relevant work. In so doing, it joins the international community’s increasing mobilization in favour of the rights and concerns of indigenous peoples, most of whom suffer disproportionately from multiple adversities such as discrimination, poverty, ill health, political under-representation, and environmental and cultural degradation. Although much attention is focused on the challenges that indigenous peoples face, it [...]



Good practice policies to eliminate gender inequalities in fish value chains

Policy-makers worldwide have traditionally assumed that fisheries are a male domain. The policy agenda has for decades given priority to the production sphere,  where men generally predominate, and has largely neglected processing and  marketing activities, where women often play a key role. Recent sex-disaggregated  data (from the World Bank, FAO and WorldFish Center) represent an initial, positive  step in providing the quantitative evidence needed to convince policy-makers of  the impo rtance of women in the sector. The data indicate that women represent  47 percent of the 120 million people engaged in capture fisheries. Worldwide,  they are even more important in [...]

Issue paper


Coping with water scarcity. An action framework for agriculture and food security. FAO Water Reports 38

This report aims to provide a conceptual framework to address food security under conditions of water scarcity in agriculture. It has been prepared by a team of FAO staff and consultants in the framework of the project `Coping with water scarcity: the role of agriculture?, and has been discussed at an Expert Consultation meeting organized in FAO, Rome in December 2009 on the same subject. It was subsequently edited and revised, taking account of discussions in the Expert Consultation and materia ls presented to the meeting. The document offers views on the conceptual framework on which FAO's water scarcity programme [...]
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