Working Group on Inclusion

Understanding inequality and exclusion in order to design for pro-poor agricultural development

Area of Interest

Agricultural development has the potential to benefit the millions of marginalized and vulnerable people who depend on the sector for their livelihoods. However, such benefits are far from guaranteed. Policies and programmes often fail to account for the complex connections between agriculture, poverty, and exclusion and, as a result, do not support sustainable and equitable advances in agriculture and food security. The intention of this working group is to discuss the kinds of contextual analysis that can be undertaken, and are being undertaken, to provide the information that is needed for inclusive agricultural development, with a view to ensuring these are accessible and widely-used by all IFIAD members.  

Relevance to IFIAD

The analytic tools discussed, and the improved understanding of agriculture-dependent livelihoods these yield, will be useful to the members of the Forum in different ways. In general terms, by shedding light on how disparate groups engage in agriculture and agri-business, this work provides valuable information on how agricultural development impacts different people in different ways. This kind of analysis can provide useful insight and contextual information on rural markets, consumption and production, uptake of innovative technologies, and use of inputs. It can also provide useful data on other agriculture-related areas including social protection. A thorough understanding of these issues, and of the complex connections between agriculture development and inclusion, will be of benefit to all those who are working in the agricultural sector, be it in the private sector or on research, in programme planning or policy formulation and influencing.

Purpose of the Group

The working group will be a space for Forum members:
  • Share and improve their understanding of the connections between agriculture and exclusion in developing countries, specifically links between agriculture and gender, poverty, ethnicity, age, asset ownership, and political exclusion;
  • Discuss the analysis and research that Forum members currently undertake on agriculture;
  • Share evidence-based examples of ‘inclusion’ in the agriculture sector;
  • Outline further information/analysis that we feel we need for our work – on research, extension work, development activities or commercial projects;
  • Disseminate and discuss methodologies, findings and implications of agriculture-specific analysis; f) Source and share data and analysis of the agriculture sector in developing countries.


Pro-poor and inclusive agricultural development is relevant for all Forum members as it links the expertise of the Forum’s academics and researchers, the interests of its private sector members, the mandates of member NGOs, and the objectives of advisory services in the agricultural sector. Given this, the working group is open to all members of the Irish Forum for International Agricultural Development. It will be of particular interest to NGOs and those working in academia, the private sector, or those engaged in knowledge transfer in developing country contexts.

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