A study tour for Women in Agriculture was organized as a part of P2P (People 2 People) Program. Representatives of institutions dealing with development of agricultural sector from the West Balkans (Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Montenegro and FYR Macedonia) as well as Turkey and Iceland had a chance to learn about activities of organizations and civic society in the administrative center of European Union.
Cluster House representative Jelena Vuckovic, Cluster Facilitator in Agriculture, participated in this tour as well. She presented the concept of the Cluster House and Agro Start-up Cluster to the representatives of institutions and other participants. The motif for joining is present in all the countries that are on the way of joining EU, so knowledge and skills from this area are very important, as agreed by all the participants.
The aim of the study tour was introduction to European policies, programs and legal regulative related to the position of women in agriculture. The participants had an opportunity to share knowledge and experience, as well as to network, both among themselves and with representatives of civic organizations at EU and member-countries level.
The task of the participants in this study tour was to analyze actual situation and position of women in rural areas in the West Balkans, Turkey and Iceland. The conclusion based on presentations is that, even though there are attempts of equality, the position of women in this field is alarming. They still have the traditional role of women who have no rights regarding ownership and financial compensation for their work. This means that women are still completely dependent in financial terms, and therefore have no possibility of decision making. Apart from that, there were numerous discussions on the issue of absence due to childbirth and raising children – women in this area have no rights as they are not supported by the relevant governmental institutions.
All these issues were discussed with representatives of EU institutions, University professors, women dealing with agriculture in EU countries and UN representatives for agricultural development and position of women.
Carsten Lund, M.Sc., President of the Cluster House Assembly, will be attending an executive program at Harvard in the period 10th to 15th February 2013