& Updates
May-June 2017

Our next course, Gender-responsive Cereal Grains Breeding, is coming up quickly! We had a great pool of applicants for the course, and are currently in the process of finalizing team selections, so stay tuned for more information about which teams will be joining us for Week 1 of the course, August 7 th -16 th in Kampala. Preparations are underway for the course, and we'll be live tweeting when it starts, so be sure to join us on Twitter to follow how things unfold:

In early June the GREAT Project Management Team gathered together at Cornell for a series of planning and review meetings, and a little bit of sightseeing! This intensive, 8-day visit was an excellent opportunity for us to build our joint Makerere - Cornell team, plan for a successful second year, and introduce the Makerere team members to Cornell faculty, staff and students. We also took advantage of being in Ithaca to make a pilgrimage to the Women's Rights National Historical Park in Seneca Falls, NY - site of the world's first women's rights convention in 1848, and widely considered the birthplace of women's rights.

We've also been looking into the bigger picture issue of better understanding the market and demand for courses like GREAT. While we know that many organizations have effectively demonstrated the crucial importance of women's and girls' empowerment in the context of development - especially in agriculture - we still struggle with issues of demonstrating a credible evidence base for the importance of gender-responsiveness in agricultural research for development. Why is this? Are there not enough agricultural researchers who value skills and knowledge acquisition in gender responsiveness? GREAT recently commissioned a market study to look into this, and we'll be discussing the results and their implications in a webinar soon - stay tuned for dates.

In other news, our inclusion of key gender resources in the last newsletter received great feedback, so we're bringing it back as a permanent feature! In each newsletter we'll hand pick some of the best new resources to share with you - if you have something you'd like to spotlight, send it our way.

Since the end of the GREAT Gender-responsive Root, Tuber and Banana Breeding Course in February our new Fellows have been busy incorporating their GREAT experience into their work...and writing blog posts about their experience. In this newsletter we've featured three such posts, and hope you'll take a moment to read through them!


Margaret Mangheni and Hale Tufan, GREAT Co-PIs
The GREAT Project Management Team goes to Cornell!
The GREAT Project Management Team came together at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY for a whirlwind 8 days of meetings, course planning, Year 1 review, networking, team bonding, historic site visits - including to the Women's Rights National Historical Park - waterfalls, and farmers' markets in early June.  See pictures from the June visit , and read Elizabeth Asiimwe's blog about the trip!

Spotlight on gender resources

GREAT is much more than a series of courses - our aim is to equip researchers to create more inclusive and effective agricultural systems, and it takes more than just training to accomplish this! To that end, GREAT is building up a Community of Practice (CoP), and curating resources to to provide the CoP and the broader research community with the information and tools needed to work toward positive change. Each newsletter we share resources we've picked out to highlight for you.

Catch up on GREAT blog posts!

See the new blog posts, including three by our Theme 1 Fellows reflecting on how GREAT training is changing their work already! Want to explore the full collection? See our blog archive...
By Elizabeth Asiimwe, GREAT Project Management Team

By all standards, it was fruitful. Five technical report outputs, learning, networking, and adventure - all in just 8 days! In June 2017, members of the implementing team of the GREAT project convened a meeting at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. The purpose of the meeting was not to discuss ... Read more...
By Losira Nasirumbi-Sanya, GREAT Fellow

My Ph.D. journey has been an eye opener to gender-responsive research. As a Doctoral student in Agricultural and Rural Innovation at Makerere University, my research has been aimed at understanding the social dynamics in Banana Technology Development (BTD) and implications for uptake. Results of... Read more...
By Obaiya Utoblo, GREAT Fellow

Being a participant in the GREAT Gender-responsive Root, Tuber and Banana Breeding training in September 2016 and February 2017 was an awesome experience. Through the training, I was exposed to a new perspective in agriculture and research - peering through the gender lens. This enabled me... Read more... 
By  Francois Iradukunda, GREAT Fellow

As one of the country's most important crops for generating income and food for household consumption, in Burundi, banana is more than just another crop. "Banana is a green gold in our community, given the way it produces a regular income for households year-round," according to a male farmer... Read more...