Agriculture is one of the most significant contributors to Indonesia’s economy, and the role of women is central to the sector. According to the International Labour Organization (2019), almost 30% of Indonesian farmers are women. Despite these, the gender gap is still present. In Indonesia, women own smaller landholding sizes (World Bank, 2022). Their participation in decision-making about farming activities tends to be minor compared to male farmers (Qanti et al., 2022), and they face more barriers to accessing farming resources (Permani, 2021).
These issues were recognized by the Asian Development Bank. Hence, with women farmers as the primary beneficiary, they launched a project that allowed access to a mobile phone application managed by farmers for farmers. This provided farmers with information about agricultural activities from farm to market. They could also connect efficiently with suppliers and buyers and conduct financial-related tasks securely.
Accordingly, the use of the mobile application increased the productivity and income of women farmers who participated in the project from 2018 to 2021. It also heightened their participation in agricultural activities despite the pandemic. Moving forward, the Asian Development Bank says there is a need to focus on women’s use of mobile phones and their participation in beneficial online activities.
Read more about the project here: https://bit.ly/40jMOJc
International Labour Organization. (2019). Employment in agriculture, female (% female employment) (modeled ILO estimate)- Indonesia. https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SL.AGR.EMPL.FE.ZS?locations=ID
International Labour Organization. (2022). The World Bank supports Indonesia’s agriculture sector to become more resilient and inclusive. https://www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2022/09/09/the-world-bank-supports-indonesia-agriculture-sector-to-become-more-resilient-and-inclusive
Permani, R. (2021, October 25). Rethinking women’s roles in Indonesian agriculture. The Jakarta Post. https://www.thejakartapost.com/academia/2021/10/24/rethinking-womens-roles-in-indonesian-agriculture.html
Qanti, S.R., Peralta, A. & Zeng, D. (2022). Social norms and perceptions drive women’s participation in agricultural decisions in West Java, Indonesia. Agric Hum Values 39, 645–662. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10460-021-10277-z