Doctoral Researcher / Research Assistant | University of Münster
Central America

Gender Empowerment in Agriculture Interventions: What Are We Still Missing? Evidence From a Randomized-Controlled Trial Among Coffee Producers in Honduras 

A randomised-control trial, based on coffee producer communities in Western Honduras, that aims to evaluate the impact of a gender empowerment in agriculture intervention with organizations of coffee producers.  

Research informing summary:
Journal article: Gender Empowerment in Agriculture Interventions: What Are We Still Missing? Evidence From a Randomized-Controlled Trial Among Coffee Producers in Honduras  (2021)
Peer Reviewed
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About:

This research used a mixed methods approach, combining area studies, focus groups, gender studies and randomised control trials.

Randomised-control trial at community level. Carried out a survey with households. Created focus groups (split by gender) and interviewed cooperative leaders.

However, there was a high rate of migration of participants in the control and intervention communities. One must always plan an extra amount of samples to account for this.

Tracking compliance with intervention was not carried out effectively by the project staff.

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Funding:

This research was funded by an external organisation, but detail has not been provided.

Relevance of sharing the results and positive findings of the randomised-control trial and the intervention, as well as the recommendations for practitioners, including robust evidence of the heterogeneous effect of the project.

Findings

  • Timing of funding might significantly affect the results of this project.

    Funding follows short periods of only 1-2 years. Not enough time to implement actual transformation. Must focus on not doing short rounds of funding for this level of expected outcomes (women’s empowerment).

  • Important to consider targeting differently the beneficiaries based upon their own characteristics before launching the project.

    In this project, there was a single standardised gender intervention for all, which did not take into account that women have different levels of empowerment.

  • Some beneficiaries had a level of empowerment, which allowed them to benefit better from the project’s interventions, others were already empowered, consequently the intervention did not change their status, and meanwhile the least empowered might have improved their empowerment, but did not reached the project’s goals.

What it means

Based on these findings, this study concludes the need for tailored interventions based on different levels of individual characteristics at baseline.

This could be useful for any agricultural intervention that has a gender dynamic aspect.

How to use

  • The findings and lessons learned from this research can be considered by practitioners and researchers when planning their interventions and designing their evaluation plans: For implementation, it is relevant to consider the importance of designing tailored interventions based on the group’s heterogeneity, and for evaluation, the importance of doing a proper selection of indicators and measurement tools, as well as the selection of the sample size (including replacement).
  • Useful for any agricultural intervention that has a gender dynamic aspect
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Rubio-Jovel, Karla. 'Gender Empowerment in Agriculture Interventions: What Are We Still Missing? Evidence From a Randomized-Controlled Trial Among Coffee Producers in Honduras '. Acume. https://www.acume.org/r/gender-empowerment-in-agriculture-interventions-what-are-we-still-missing-evidence-from-a-randomized-controlled-trial-among-coffee-producers-in-honduras/