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CEGENSA AND CDD-Ghana Hold Round Table Discussion on Academia Meets Policy: The Role of Feminist Scholars

In commemoration of the 2022 Day of Scientific Renaissance of Africa celebration, the Center for Gender Studies and Advocacy (CEGENSA) and the Ghana Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) have held a roundtable discussion on the theme, “Academia Meets Policy: The Role of Feminist Scholars”.

The panelists for the event were Prof. Wunpini Fatimata Mohammed, Assistant Professor, College of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of Georgia; Dr. Deborah Atobrah, Director, CEGENSA; Professor. Nana Akua Anyidoho, the Director of the Centre for Social Policy Studies, University of Ghana; Dr. Kojo Asante, Director of Advocacy and Policy, CDD-Ghana and Ms. Regina Amarfo-Tetteh, Head of Human Rights at CDD. It was moderated by Professor Jarpa Dawuni, Associate Professor, Howard University.

Dr. Deborah Atobrah, in her remarks stated the University of Ghana’s position in promoting gender-related issues. She said gender and feminist scholarship is important to the University of Ghana, to the extent that every University of Ghana student is mandated to take a module on Introduction to Gender irrespective of their field of study to provide students with the relevant knowledge on gender, its impact on their lives, and the opportunities available to both men and women”.

Dr. Atobrah reiterated how the Centre, with the support of its affiliates has done a lot of advocacy work. 

Prof. Nana Akua Anyidoho, talked about the prejudices and pressures female scholar-activists face in the quest to make real-life difference with their research. She said, “I’ve had colleagues who have almost been penalized for the fact that they were activists as well as scholars and researchers. Somehow, there is this notion that you being an activist compromises your objectivity in some way so there is this prejudice that we have to deal with.”

Speaking through a virtual medium, Prof. Wunpini Fatimata Mohammed, Assistant Professor, College of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of Georgia, added that researchers should collaborate with civil society such as CDD to bring about change by disseminating information through public lectures, and workshops on the findings and recommendations of their research. 

Dr. Kojo Asante, gave a brief remark on how CDD can partner with feminist scholars in turning research into advocacy tools. Dr. Asante disclosed that the collaboration with feminist scholars will serve as a dissemination hub to drive advocacy and aid in the creation of a publication blog to promote women’s participation. 

On her part, Ms. Regina Amarfo-Tetteh, highlighted CDD’s plans to undertake research in social protection, women’s inclusion, and the employment of women to attract funding. She assured panelists that this will go a long way in encouraging sustainability in women. Ms. Amarfo-Tetteh stated that the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) report showed that the strengthening of the informal sector will help women to cater for their needs. 

In her closing remarks, Professor Jarpa Dawuni, stated that funding is a necessity to support the work of civil society organizations especially organizations dealing with gender and women-related issues. 

An interactive question and answer session ensued after the discussions which culminated in the discussion concluding on encouraging Women/Feminist Scholars to turn their research into advocacy tools to influence public policy to achieving inclusion and gender equality in Ghana.

Group photo of presenters

Group photo of presenters

Click here to view photos of the event