Gendered traditional agroecological knowledge in agri‑food systems: a systematic review

Ana G. Ramirez‑Santos, Federica Ravera, Marta G. Rivera‑Ferre, Mar Calvet‑Nogués
Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine

Traditional agroecological knowledge (i.e. TAeK) is gaining recognition for its potential contribution to climate change adaptation in food systems, ecosystems restoration and food insecurity. Despite the existing literature on Traditional Ecological Knowledge and its nexus with food security, how gender critically influences the distribution of such knowledge within agri-food systems has not yet been systematically analysed. In this regard, this systematic review attempts to answer four questions: 1) How does the literature on gender and TAeK in agri-food systems evolved temporally, geographically and in different agroecosystems? 2) How are gender and intersectionality mainly approached by such literature? 3) How do the articles address gendered dimensions in TAeK within the agri-food system activities? 4) What are the main drivers of change that influence TAeK and adaptive responses? The results show the gendered nature of TAeK in relation to food production, processing, and conservation activities, and how these activities are linked to tasks and activities, gender-specific knowledge, and spaces where gender discrimination is reproduced. The review also identifies elements that delimit and/or take part of the development of TAeK, such as gendered access to resources, gendered institutions, and the identification of the main drivers of change and impacts of TAeK erosion and biodiversity loss. These results are discussed in terms of power relations that interact with sociocultural norms and practices according to the specific geographical context and agroecosystem.