GCU organises climate change conference in Malaysia

27 March 2012

Dr Tahseen Jafry

Dr Tahseen Jafry

GCU will play a leading role in organising a global climate change conference to be held in Malaysia in November this year.

Alongside the Sri Lankan-based International Centre for Research and Development, GCU will organise the second international Climate Change and Social Issues conference to held in Kuala Lumpur on the 28th and 29th of November.

Engineer and social scientist Dr Tahseen Jafry will lead on the work. Dr Jafry is a specialist in natural resource management, gender and agricultural development – key components in the larger climate change debate.  

The senior lecturer recently returned from New Dehli where she gave a presentation into her on-going research at the Global Conference on Women in Agriculture, which was attended by Indian President Pratibha Devisingh Patil.

Dr Jafry, who is also co-editing a special gender-focused edition of The Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension, is researching methods of encouraging governments to extend agricultural support - known as extension - to often poor and marginalised female farmers.

Her paper ‘Reducing Women’s Drudgery in the Context of Climate Change Through Gender Sensitive Agricultural Extension Support’ explores ways in which women can access new and improved tools and better support and service networks.

World leaders have identified that better supporting women’s role in agriculture will boost overall food production. It is a key issue amongst the larger debates surrounding climate change and ensuring food security as the world population continues to grow.  

Dr Jafry will also act as a moderator on gender in the Modernising Extension and Advisory Services scheme, a USAID-funded project aimed at disseminating good practice and creating sustainable rural extension and advisory service systems. The project is running a Global Learning Exchange Summit on Extension from June 6-8, 2012, in Washington, D.C.

Dr Jafry said: “There is an urgent need to identify sustainable strategies and solutions that addresses women's role in achieving food security in changing climatic conditions.  Though women participate in all activities related to agriculture they are usually the first to be marginalised and we need to look at mechanisms for changing that.”