Org Spotlight: ASOMOBI

December 19th, 2014

La Asociación de Mujeres Organizadas de Biolley 




La Asociación de Mujeres Organizadas de Biolley (ASOMOBI), translated as Organized Women’s Association of Biolley, was founded in 1997 by a group of women from the community of Biolley, Costa Rica. The founders had a shared desire to fight to improve the lives of families in the community and surrounding towns. ASOMOBI receives financial and technical support from national and international donors who believe in the capacity and leadership of the group.

In an attempt to extend benefits to families, roasting coffee is grown by families and husbands. ASOMOBI also focuses on rural tourism around coffee and other attractions in the area, including development projects centered on ecotourism.

ASOMOBI’s objectives are to build capacity for their members, strengthen rural community tourism, establish conditions for sustainability in operations for ASOMOBI coffee, promote conservation measures, and strengthen the administrative and operational capacity of the organization.

They operate under the mission:

“We are a group of women organized community Biolley we seek to improve the quality of life for our families and the natural and social environment through the sale of products and services and working with the forces of the community.”

Currently ASOMOBI is working to rebuild operations after a fire in 2012, which destroyed Posada Rural Cerro Biolley, leading reduced operational capacity for ASOMOBI specifically and decreased tourism, and increased unemployment for the entire community.

Article of Note

December 16th, 2014

Sustainable rural development in Rwanda: the importance of a focus on women in agriculture.

Shirley Randell and Megan McCloskey. International Journal of Agricultural Extension 2:107-119, 2014. [open access]InternationalJournal_AgriculturalExtension

Rwanda is most well known internationally for the shocking 1994 genocide against the Tutsi in which over 800,000 people were cruelly slaughtered and over 300,000 women were brutally raped in 100 days. The nation’s second most widely known characteristic is that it leads the world in the representation of women among decision-makers and in Parliament: the only country with a majority of women in its Chamber of Deputies and, at 64 percent, a substantial one. This paper examines a third important facet: the place of gender in agriculture and agricultural extension in economic development and poverty reduction in Rwanda. To overcome the challenges facing farmers and ensure women’s inclusion, the Government of Rwanda has adopted the Agriculture Gender Strategy. The Strategy lays out clear steps to ensure that the programs and activities targeting the agricultural sector set a strong foundation for equal rights and equal opportunities for both women and men in rural development. The Agriculture Gender Strategy serves as a complement to other policies, including the National Agricultural Extension Strategy, whose collective vision is to ensure ideal conditions for the dissemination and exchange of information between producers, farmer organizations and other partners in order to transform and to modernize the agricultural sector so that it can effectively contribute to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, Vision 2020, and the Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy objectives. This paper analyzed the challenges facing the agricultural sector, particularly Rwanda’s women farmers, analyze the strategies Rwanda is using to meet these challenges, and suggest good practice from Rwanda’s experience.

Updates from the International Center for Research on Women

December 15th, 2014
International Center for Research on Women
Our Work in Action

BBC: Why do Indian women go to sterilization camps?

Ravi Verma, head of ICRW’s Asia Regional Office, joins BBC’s World Have Your Say panel discussion to explore what circumstance may have led to the deaths of more than a dozen women who underwent a sterilization procedure in the Chhattisgarh state of India. Verma attributes lack of knowledge and access to comprehensive sexual health services, as well as unsafe procedures and spaces, as key problems that lead to high levels of mortality among many low-income women who undergo sterilization. More>

U.N.: India’s Men Need to Play a Bigger Role in Gender-Equality Battle

The Wall Street Journal cites recent ICRW study on how rigid male masculinity contributes to intimate partner violence and gender discrimination, as key evidence that global efforts to end gender-based violence must engage men and boys. More>

Girls Left Behind: Review of Secretary General’s Report Leaves Much to Be Desired for Girls, Women

ICRW’s Lyric Thompson writes for the Huffington Post about United Nation’s Secretary General’s latest report on the next global development agenda, lamenting how girls’ unique needs and priorities were largely left out of the conversation. More>

Six Out of 10 Indian Men Admit Violence Against Wives – Study

Released at the MenEngage Global Symposium in Delhi, The Economic Times, The Times of India and Reuters highlight a study undertaken by ICRW in partnership with UNFPA, which examines men’s attitudes and practices around gender inequality, intimate partner violence and son preference in India. More>

ICRW President Featured on Trust Women

ICRW President Sarah Degnan Kambou spoke to Trust Women about why she is attending their conference this year and explains where she would like to see action being taken in 2014. More>

The True Cost of a Mother’s Death: Calculating The Toll On Children

ICRW’s research on the economic and emotional costs of maternal mortality in Kenya was featured on NPR affiliate WBUR’s blog, following a presentation of the research and implications of the findings at Harvard University. More>

A Day for Global Girls Gets People Talking, But Then What?

ICRW’s Senior Policy Manager Lyric Thompson spoke to NPR on how and why commemorative days such as the International Day of the Girl are important. More>

Redefine Manhood, Prevent Violence

With the recent events related to domestic violence and the NFL, Brian Heilman, Gender and Youth Specialist at ICRW offers insights on why violence occurs and what we can do to prevent it.More>

Advocates Seize on White House Africa Summit to Call for an End to Child Marriage

On the sidelines of the first U.S.-African Summit, ICRW, Girls Not Brides USA, Human Rights Watch and the International Women’s Health Coalition hosted a special event calling on U.S. and African leaders to end child, early and forced marriage. More>

       ICRW’S NEW BLOG IS LIVE!       

ICRW’s brand new blog, Gender Lens, went live this morning. In it, you’ll find more about the people, places, and perspectives behind our data. Read the blog now>


Do you shop on AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know – you can use the same account and access all of your information. The difference is by shopping on AmazonSmile, Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of your purchases to ICRW. Happy shopping!


Masculinity, Intimate Partner VIolence, and Son Preference in India

A groundbreaking new report released at the MenEngage Global Symposium in Delhi examines men’s attitudes and practices around gender inequality, son preference and intimate partner violence in India. More>

         MEET THE RESEARCHER         

Meet Jeff Edmeades, ICRW’s Senior Social Demographer, who has been working to improve the lives of married adolescent girls in Ethiopia’s Amhara region. Read more>


‘Tis the season of giving, and what better way to spread kindness and share generosity than by supporting a cause you believe in? Direct your end-of-year giving to help ICRW support women and girls in building healthy, equitable, and sustainable communities for themselves and their families! All gifts will be matched 2:1 by our Board of Directors until December 31st.Donate Now>

NEWS AND COMMENTARY                                              

New Ugandan HIV and AIDS law jeopardizes health of women, men, and children

ICRW’s Anne Stangl weighs in on a problematic new law in Uganda that will result in discrimination against men and women living with HIV and will likely result in fewer women and girls – and men and boys – seeking and adhering to treatment that could literally save their lives. More>

Changing the World, One Girl at a Time

ICRW’s Dr. Suzanne Petroni writes on Ms. Magazine’s blog about how adolescent girls and the unique challenges they face have been left out of conversations about global development for far too long. With recent and upcoming events focused on girls, the world is finally paying attention, but we must push global leaders to do more to improve the lives of adolescent girls. More>


NEW RESEARCH FROM ICRW                                                                                                        

Groundbreaking Insights on Shifting Gender Norms and Ending Perpetuation of Violence

A new ICRW report released at the MenEngage Global Symposium in Delhi last month reveals that 60 percent of men surveyed in India had acted violently against their wife/partner at some point in their lives. The study examines men’s attitudes and practices around gender inequality, son preference and intimate partner violence, and offers recommendations to effectively engage men and boys in efforts to advance gender equality. Read report>

Adolescents and Family Planning: What the Evidence Shows (Synthesis)

ICRW conducted a review of literature to identify socio-cultural and structural obstacles that adolescents must overcome in order to have the desire and ability to access family planning services. The study aimed to determine which programmatic efforts were most effective and where gaps in evidence require further research. Read report>

How Empowering Girls Can End Child Marriage

In a piece for the Trust Women website, ICRW’s Ann Warner, Senior Youth and Gender Specialist, writes about a new ICRW report exhibiting how empowering girls can help end child marriage, highlighting case studies from four countries. Read report>

Strengthening the Business Case for Women’s Economic Empowerment

A new report presents a groundbreaking integrated framework that the private sector can adopt to increase return on investment and enhance women’s economic advancement. Read report>


Org Spotlight: ICIWF

December 15th, 2014


Information Center of the Independent Women’s Forum

The “Information Center of the Independent Women’s Forum” (ICIWF) is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation registered in 1994. In the beginning, the goals of the organisation were: support of regional women’s initiatives; development of educational programs for women; development of the information exchange between women’s organisations and the institutionalization of the women’s movement. However, during the last few years new aims were added, such as the inclusion of women in the development of local self-governance; development of local communities, partnership on the territories and engendering municipal and local policies.

Today, one of the main aims of the ICIWF is organising its activities as a new social institution for empowering women and developing the women’s movement.

One of the strategic directions of the ICIWF’s activities for the last few years has been the development of partnership between social activists from different social movements in order to strengthen their understanding of the fact that reaching gender equality is one of the most important aims in forming the Russia’s civil society.

In order to reach these aims the ICIWF has developed four interrelated programs:

  • innovative approaches to empowering women in frame of feminist practice
  • women’s participation in urban and local policies
  • informational and publishing activities
  • international activity

Event: 2015 FPR-UCLA Interdisciplinary Conference on Gender

December 12th, 2014

When: October 23-24, 2015
Where: UCLA, Los Angeles, CA

Gender and related areas, from biological, cultural, and social or environmental perspectives. Learn more here.

Sari van Anders, Arthur Arnold, Tom Boellstorff, Lisa Diamond, Anne Fausto-Sterling, Daniel Fessler, Matthew Gutmann, Gilbert Herdt, Melissa Hines, Kathy Huang, Marcia Inhorn, Hillard Kaplan, Robert Lemelson, Michael Peletz, Sarah Richardson, James Rilling, Alice Wexler, Carol Worthman


EARLY Registration ENDS on June 30, 2015

*Online registration for general public only. All others (Current Students/ University of California Faculty+Staff/International Customers/Conference Scholarships) must register by MAIL/FAX/IN PERSON to UCLA Central Ticket Office windows.

Article of Note

December 10th, 2014

The Women, Peace and Security agenda and Australian leadership in the world: From rhetoric to commitment?

By L. J. Shepherd and J. True. 2014.australian_journal

What is the ‘Women, Peace and Security agenda’ and why is it relevant now for Australia? During 2013–14, Australia is a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and, with a growing foreign military, peace building and aid presence around the world, the country must play a role in preventing conflict, in protecting women and girls from violence before, during and after conflict, and in encouraging the participation of women in these peace and security decisions in order to create the structural, gender-equal conditions for lasting peace. This article highlights the promises made by Australia during the campaign for the Security Council seat. It evaluates the credibility of the campaign commitments by assessing Australia’s foreign policies and overseas aid spending on women and peace building in Asia and the Pacific; exploring the avenues for government-funded research on women, peace and security issues to influence government policies and programs; and taking stock of the government’s record of engaging with civil society in developing and carrying out its National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security. The article suggests concrete actions that would allow Australia to fulfill its promises and progress its international leadership on the major pillars of the Women, Peace and Security agenda.

To go to the full article click here.

Kudos to Naomi Cahn

December 9th, 2014

The Global Gender Program is very happy to congratulate one of GW’s own. George Washington University Law Professor, Naomi Cahn, has graced not one, but two best book lists this year. Her book,  Marriage Markets: How Inequality Is Remaking the American Family, is one of twenty books chosen for the Newsweek Staff Picks of 2014, and is on the list for the Economist’s Books of the Year! Cahn coauthored with June Carbone.


Event Recap: A Call to Action on Violence Against Women and Girls

December 8th, 2014

A Call to Action on Violence Against Women and Girls—The US Launch of the Lancet Series on Violence Against Women and Girls

by Staff Contributor Camry Haskins

On the seventh day of 16 Days Against Gender Based Violence, the Global Women’s Institute (GWI) at George Washington University hosted the US launch of the Lancet Series on Violence Against Women and Girls. The launch opened with the Call to Action followed up by two
panel discussions. The first panel focused on evidence while the second looked at lessons from practice.

Panel one: Prevention of VAWG:
What Does the Evidence Say?

Panel one centered on the research and findings by Mary Ellsberg, Director of GWI, and her team. Ms. Ellsberg was joined by Dr. Lori Heise, Director of the Centre on Gender, Violence and Health and James Tielsch, Chair of the Department of Global Health at the Milken institute School of Public Health. One of their biggest findings was that there is a shortage of research. What research has been conducted is mainly skewed toward high-income countries. When compiling what data there is, it becomes clear that there are
different tendencies for violence at all levels of society. And the percentage of gender-based violence (GBV) can differ between 2 percent and 70 percent depending on location. The fact that the percentages differ so greatly creates hope
that we can greatly reduce violence against women and girls (VAWG). The first panel closed with remarks on what they hoped the future focus would be in regards to VAWG. overall, the consensus was on a push for convergence of research, increased interest in valuations of programs, and increased testing of studies and strategies.

Panel two: Prevention of VAWG:
Lessons from Practice

Lori Michau, Co-founder of Raising Voices and Amy Bank, Co-Founder of Puntos de Encuentro represented their team who put an article together that looked at GBV from the perspective of practice over academics. Rajiv Rimal, Chair of the Department of Prevention and Community Health at the Milken Institute School of Public Health, joined them. Their panel focused heavily on norms and tactics for communicating with communities whose norms supported, or at least did not outlaw, violence against women. Short videos helped to illustrate the change that was taking place in the communities they were working in. They stressed the importance of inclusive projects that educated men and women, as well as, boys and girls. Their take-aways focused on merging the academic world with practice in order to increase the flow of information and prevent bad practices from continuing do to lack of knowledge.

The launch closed with a sense of hope for the future. There is still a lot of work to do, but it is not an impossible endeavor.

Go to GWToday to read more!

Org Spotlight: 1 Million Women

December 5th, 2014

Basic RGB

1 Million Women


1 Million Women is an Australia based organization that focuses on what women can do to fight climate change. Founded by Natalie Isaacs in 2009, 1 Million Women is based on the concept that since women do the majority of household purchasing, women can have a huge impact on energy consumption and waste creation. The organization focuses on the wasteful lifestyles of richer countries, and believes that it is these countries that must take ownership to combat environmental degradations.

1 Million Women focuses on many areas that affect the environment. They advocate for the reduction of consumption, increased recycling, and finding alternative methods to high energy-use  activities (i.e. using public transportation over driving a car to get everywhere). In every instance, they use a million women tag, such as, “if a million women cut household electricity by 20%, we can make 2 coal-fired power stations redundant”. They advocate large change that only requires small actions. If enough people act, even minor changes will make a big difference.

The 1 Million Women site covers climate change news from around the world, and it offers everyday examples of how to reduce your own carbon footprint. 1 Million Women is an organization that combines women’s collaboration and empowerment with simple ways to get involved and fight climate change.

Women, Peace, Security, and Development Bibliography Update

December 3rd, 2014

In December, the Global Gender Program’s Women, Peace, Security, and Development Bibliography is adding new sources. During the month of November, the number of entries has increased from approximately 2,600 entries to nearly 2,800 sources. Many of the new sources are on education, particularly the impacts of improving education for girls in developing countries.

Examples include:
“Afghan-Pakistani Girls and the Right to an Education”
“Gender Equality in Education–Increasing the Momentum for Change”
“Girls, Disabilities and School Education in the East Asia Pacific Region”

We continue to improve the database by allowing researchers to find or search for sources more efficiently.

Please suggest additional sources by sending an email to: