Gender and social capital: The importance of gender differences for the maturity and effectiveness of natural resource management groups
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This article focuses on gender social capital and natural resource management (NRM). The authors present a range of gender theories that justify why social groups differ in activities and outcomes for NRM. This study used three different statistical methods to analyze the data collected in 33 rural programs in 20 countries of Latin America, Africa, and Asia. The data shows mixed results, men and women do not differ in terms of altruism, but result indicate that the presence of women increase collaboration, solidarity, and conflict resolution in groups. Men have greater institutional social capital and women have stronger relational social capital. Women's groups show greater reciprocity; this is due to the fact that women depend on each other to cope with multiple responsibilities. Capacity for self-sustaining collective action also increased in women's groups. A relationship was found between gender and group maturity and NRM, achievements and approaches. These results reinforce the importance of gender analysis in NRM, and the need to allow adequate opportunities for women's participation.