Gender equality and agriculture in Scottish island communities.

Lead Research Organisation: Newcastle University
Department Name: Sch of Natural Sciences & Env Sciences

Abstract

Throughout history, academia chose to ignore the influence that marginalised groups had on society, with the rise of postmodern philosophers Derrida and Foucault the 'other' were finally given recognition (Butler, 2002). In relation to rural studies, Philo (1992) advocated a move away from the metanarrative portrayal of 'Mr Average' in the countryside, which neglected the wide variations of the rural population. This is evident for women, who can be deemed as the 'other' in the rural, which is viewed as a 'masculine space' (Brandth and Haugen, 2010; Dahlstom, 1996). This is especially prevalent for women who work in the agriculture industry, whose roles have been systematically ignored or belittled in the past (Little, 1986; Shortall, 2014). Therefore, this research project will focus on women who either manage, own or contribute to a farm business in the Scottish Islands. It will build upon Shortall et al's (2017) report into the gender inequalities women in agriculture face on the Scottish Mainland and address the gap in knowledge regarding island specific issues. This will be achieved using qualitative methods; semi-structured interviews and focus groups, which will allow for in-depth discussions surrounding women's personal experiences and the perceived barriers they may have faced. Gender inequality within this industry has recently received much media and governmental recognition, which demonstrates the current need for this type of research in peripheral rural communities. The relevance of this research is strengthened by this being a collaborative project with the Scottish Government, who acknowledge this gap in our understanding.

Publications

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Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
ES/P000762/1 01/10/2017 30/09/2027
2235564 Studentship ES/P000762/1 01/10/2019 30/09/2022 Hannah Budge