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Having younger or multiple dependants at various educational stages and the demands of home schooling had a negative impact on the outputs of women academics. Credit: Bigstock
Having younger or multiple dependants at various educational stages and the demands of home schooling had a negative impact on the outputs of women academics. Credit: Bigstock

Having younger or multiple dependants at various educational stages and the demands of home schooling had a negative impact on the outputs of women academics. Credit: Bigstock

Aug 9 2022 (IPS) - The under-representation of women in research is well documented. Emerging evidence suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated this inequality and disrupted the research enterprise globally.

But none of these studies, mainly from the global north, provide detailed explanations for the scale of this decline.

Our research offers the first comprehensive study to shed light on the complex reasons for the decline in research during the pandemic-enforced lockdown.

The single most important factor affecting the academic work of female academics appears to be having younger or multiple dependants in the home. Overall, the pandemic has most affected academic work among women with children

We surveyed 2,029 women academics drawn from 26 public universities in South Africa. Other studies have shown that there are heightened expectations that women take on the role of primary care giver in families and sacrifice parts of their careers due to this role. Similarly, women in the academy are expected to fulfil this role in caring for students, taking on greater teaching and learning responsibilities compared to men.

Overall our findings showed that having younger or multiple dependants at various educational stages and the demands of home schooling had a negative impact on the outputs of women academics. Competing roles such as teaching online and caring for students, together with the sharp increase in teaching time, placed a massive burden on female academics. Their research outputs suffered.

Women also acknowledged the lack of emotional support they got as working academics.

 

What we found

The single most important factor affecting the academic work of female academics appears to be having younger or multiple dependants in the home. Overall, the pandemic has most affected academic work among women with children. Of the respondents in our study, 54% indicated they had children living at home with them.

(Read)NEWS BROUGHT TO YOU BY: INTER PRESS SERVICE
August 7,2022 11:22 PM
The writer is Manager, UNDP’s Global Programme on Nature for Development
August 5,2022 8:37 AM
The body of Walter Sandoval shows a number of dark bruises on his arms and knees, as well as lacerations on his left eye and on his head – signs that he suffered some kind of violence before dying in a Salvadoran prison, accused of being a gang member. The evidence of the beating is […]
August 5,2022 4:50 AM
This spring, I taught a new undergraduate course in environmental sociology. Most of my students took the course because they were curious to see what their desire to live more sustainably had to do with sociology. By the third week – after a deep dive into the troubling connections between fossil capitalism (the dependence of […]
August 5,2022 2:30 AM
A group of scientists involved in finding solutions to minimize the impact of a devastating banana virus in Burundi have developed an Artificial Intelligence (AI) tool for monitoring the disease. United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) research shows that the Banana Bunchy Top Disease (BBTD), caused by the Banana Bunchy Top Virus (BBTV), is […]
August 4,2022 11:02 PM
In Nigeria, women play key roles in food and nutrition security through their contributions to agricultural production, their influence on how to allocate household income, and their efforts to ensure proper nutrition for all household members. However, malnutrition remains widespread among rural women and children in Nigeria, especially following the COVID-19 pandemic and amid the […]
August 4,2022 5:44 AM
The largest ever settlement in Canadian legal history, 40 billion Canadian dollars, occurred in 2022, but it didn’t come from a court – it followed a decision by the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal. In 2016 the Tribunal affirmed a complaint that the Government of Canada’s child welfare system discriminated against First Nations children. (First Nations […]
August 4,2022 2:34 AM
Idah Hanyani, popularly known as Gogo Chihera, has backed the opposition since Zimbabwe gained independence in 1980. Born in Wedza, a district in Zimbabwe’s Mashonaland East province, the 91-year-old first supported United African National Council (UANC). At home in Glenview, Harare’s high-density suburb, Hanyani told IPS she has featured at opposition rallies for years. During her […]
August 3,2022 11:31 PM
Antonio Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations, in his address to the UN press corps while launching the third brief by the Global Crisis Response Group on Energy.
August 3,2022 6:04 AM
Human beings have proved to be capable of producing innumerable practical inventions while much too often making the worst use of them. Take the case, per example, of how criminal groups heavily rely on digital platforms to trap and enslave their victims also for extracting and selling their organs. Yes, technology now dominates most of […]
By SeiMi Chu
Dr Svetlana Alexandrova, Medical Director of the Chernihiv Psychoneurological Hospital, and Yevgen Skydan, Technical Specialist, walk Todd Bernhardt and his team through the basement where patients and staff were sheltered during the Russian invasion. Credit: International Medical Corps
Dr Svetlana Alexandrova, Medical Director of the Chernihiv Psychoneurological Hospital, and Yevgen Skydan, Technical Specialist, walk Todd Bernhardt and his team through the basement where patients and staff were sheltered during the Russian invasion. Credit: International Medical Corps

Dr Svetlana Alexandrova, Medical Director of the Chernihiv Psychoneurological Hospital, and Yevgen Skydan, Technical Specialist, walk Todd Bernhardt and his team through the basement where patients and staff were sheltered during the Russian invasion. Credit: International Medical Corps

Stanford, Aug 9 2022 (IPS) - During Todd Bernhardt’s visit to Ukraine’s conflict zones, he encountered untold damage to hospitals, healthcare clinics, and communities. The Senior Director of Global Communications at the International Medical Corps also encountered enormous courage.

On one of his visits, Bernhardt met Dr Svetlana Alexandrova, Medical Director of the Psychoneurological Hospital in Chernihiv, a city about two hours northeast of Kyiv that saw fierce fighting during the early weeks of the invasion.

He said Alexandrova was a defiant and committed leader who was not afraid to confront Russian soldiers and tell them to stop destroying the hospital, which treats critically ill patients. Hospital staff proudly told Bernhardt that as the soldiers were getting ready to retreat, they told the staff members that they had a “tough boss.”

“The patients in this hospital have developmental, mental health, and physical challenges that have led to them being hospitalized. In some cases, they are quite old and frail. And during this time, they had to shelter in the hospital basement—a damp and dark place where you would not want to live,” Bernhardt said. He described how hundreds of patients with 30-40 staff were trapped in the basement during the Russian bombardment.

They had to stay in this basement for 40 days and 40 nights without access to water, heat, and electricity. The staff occasionally went out and managed to forage for food during lulls in the fighting. In fear of being shot, they would cook over open fires during the day while being undercover.

A destroyed residential building in Dnipro. Credit: World Food Programme

International Medical Corps’ involvement with Ukraine goes back to 1999 when it provided medical training to doctors and medical supplies and equipment. Now International Medical Corps operates hubs in seven Ukrainian cities—Chernihiv, Dnipro, Kyiv, Lviv, Odesa, Stryi, and Vinnytsia—that provide relief services and training across the country.

International Medical Corps’ mission is primarily to be a first responder. A big part of its approach is to work within an existing health system, support it, and strengthen it. It also provides medicine or medical equipment, trains doctors, staff, and clinicians, and builds water and sanitation systems.

“We are a first responder. We go in, respond to the disaster, and stay to help strengthen existing systems, to make sure that the community is left stronger than when we first came in,” Bernhardt said, elaborating on International Medical Corps’ mission.

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By Mario Osava
View of a bridge in severe disrepair on the BR-319 highway, in the heart of the Amazon, which the Brazilian government plans to repave along the 405-kilometer central section, out of a total of 885 kilometers, because it has deteriorated to the point that is impassable for much of the year. Those who venture along it take three times the normal amount of time to drive the entire length, with the risk of seriously damaging their vehicles. CREDIT: Tarmo Tamming/Flickr

View of a bridge in severe disrepair on the BR-319 highway, in the heart of the Amazon, which the Brazilian government plans to repave along the 405-kilometer central section, out of a total of 885 kilometers, because it has deteriorated to the point that is impassable for much of the year. Those who venture along it take three times the normal amount of time to drive the entire length, with the risk of seriously damaging their vehicles. CREDIT: Tarmo Tamming/Flickr

RIO DE JANEIRO, Aug 9 2022 (IPS) - The mandatory initial permit granted by Brazil’s environmental authority for the repaving of the BR-319 highway, in the heart of the Amazon jungle, intensified the alarm over the possible irreversible destruction of the rainforest.

The 885-kilometer highway is the only overland route to Manaus, the capital of the state of Amazonas with a population of 2.25 million in south-central Brazil. The road runs to another Amazon rainforest city, Porto Velho, capital of the state of Rondônia, population 550,000.

"Restrictions arose that limited the public hearings to evaluate the studies as early as 2021, and so far there has been no solution to these problems. In addition, the participation of affected populations was limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the difficulties in attendance, especially for indigenous people." -- Carlos Durigan

The highway emerged as part of the plans of the 1964-1985 military dictatorship to integrate the Amazon rainforest with the rest of the country, through several highways crossing the then almost unpopulated jungle and the promotion of massive internal migration from other regions.

Due to heavy rains and frequent flooding many sections of the road and a number of bridges have fallen into disrepair. Twelve years after its inauguration in 1976, BR-319 was recognized as a largely impassable road, undermined by neglect.

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By Alexander Kozul-Wright
A woman paints a mural for Peace and Reconciliation in Colombia. Credit: UNMVC/Jennifer Moreno

The writer is a Geneva-based researcher for the Third World Network

A woman paints a mural for Peace and Reconciliation in Colombia. Credit: UNMVC/Jennifer Moreno

GENEVA, Aug 9 2022 (IPS) - For the first time in its contemporary history, Colombia has a left-wing government. The presidency of Gustavo Petro, who took the reins August 8, marks a significant break from the political status quo. He also represents a stiff test for U.S. influence in Latin America.

Colombia is Washington’s most enduring ally in the region, and in recent years their relationship has been built around combatting the nation’s drug cartels. But despite major efforts to curb supply, Colombia remains a top source of cocaine for the United States.

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) recently estimated that Colombia’s cocaine harvest hit a record high in 2020. On the back of new coca varieties (the base ingredient for cocaine) and better cultivation techniques, Colombia’s potential output reached 1,228 tonnes in 2020. This was triple the 2010 level and four times greater than in the early 1990s, when Pablo Escobar was at the height of his infamy.

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By Anis Chowdhury and Jomo Kwame Sundaram
Anis Chowdhury

SYDNEY and KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 9 2022 (IPS) - The world economy is on the brink of outright recession, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The Ukraine war and sanctions have scuttled recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Over 80 central banks have already raised interest rates so far this year. Except for the Bank of Japan governor, major central bankers have reacted to recent inflation by raising interest rates. Hence, stagflation is increasingly likely as rising interest rates slow the economy, but do not quell supply-side cost-push inflation.

IMF U-turn unexplained
The IMF chief economist recently advised, “Inflation at current levels represents a clear risk for current and future macroeconomic stability and bringing it back to central bank targets should be the top priority for policymakers”.

(Read)NEWS BROUGHT TO YOU BY: IPS
By Baher Kamal
The female guardians of Venezuela’s Imataca Forest Reserve | An FAO-GEF project, which also aims to increase gender equality in the forestry sector, has continued supporting the Kariña women in actively leading the development of their territories and the conservation of the area’s biodiversity. Credit: FAO
The female guardians of Venezuela’s Imataca Forest Reserve | An FAO-GEF project, which also aims to increase gender equality in the forestry sector, has continued supporting the Kariña women in actively leading the development of their territories and the conservation of the area’s biodiversity. Credit: FAO

The female guardians of Venezuela’s Imataca Forest Reserve | An FAO-GEF project, which also aims to increase gender equality in the forestry sector, has continued supporting the Kariña women in actively leading the development of their territories and the conservation of the area’s biodiversity. Credit: FAO

MADRID, Aug 8 2022 (IPS) - Nothing –or too little– has changed since Hollywood started producing its spectacular western movies. Rough men, ranchers, mercenary killers, saloons, cowboys, guns, gold fever, the ‘good sheriff’… and the ‘bad indians”. Those movies were anything but fiction–they were real history.

Add to this mix, the deeply-rooted, widely dominating culture of the so-called “white supremacy.”

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By Wilson Odhiambo
A child has her teeth examined remotely. The Daktari Smart technology means children in rural Kenya are linked to specialist care in big centres. Credit: Daktari Smart
A child has her teeth examined remotely. The Daktari Smart technology means children in rural Kenya are linked to specialist care in big centres. Credit: Daktari Smart

A child has her teeth examined remotely. The Daktari Smart technology means children in rural Kenya are linked to specialist care in big centres. Credit: Daktari Smart

Nairobi, Aug 8 2022 (IPS) - New telemedicine technology, Daktari Smart, aims to mitigate the gap between child patients and medical specialists in rural Kenya.

Officially launched in November 2021, the system was built to help sick children have easy access to medical specialists minus the cost of being physically present (remote/digital access). According to them, this will help optimise the delivery of healthcare systems.

(Read)NEWS BROUGHT TO YOU BY: IPS