This paper is an attempt to bring together two major streams of debate and policy analysis, which could make a major contribution to equitable development. The first concerns gender issues and how they relate to achieving both equity and efficiency goals. The second concerns innovation in agriculture and the way planning and policy is starting to view this as a multidimensional process driven by capacities distributed through society. This paper is being written in the context of a programme — the DFID-funded Research Into Use programme — that is exploring how research can be used for innovation and impact. The purpose of the paper is to reflect on the opportunities that a systems understanding of innovation provides for addressing gender issues and to provide some insight on what RIU might expect to achieve in this regard. The paper concludes with a call for two major shifts in practice and analysis: (1) A shift from gender analysis to gender learning and (2) A shift from women’s empowerment to empowering innovation system capacity.
RIU Discussion Paper 6, 46 pp.