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Women and Gender in Global Perspectives
WGGP has moved to the Armory
Fellowship and Award Opportunites-Deadline Feb. 16
NEW in 2017 Fellowship and Award Applications NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE

WGGP Fellowship and Research Award application now online.  Application deadline is February 16th at 5pm.  Online submission of letters of reference available also.  


Please direct questions to Anita Kaiser at or 333-6221.

WGGP Alumni Spotlight Series
Batamaka Some and Bill Gates, June 2016 

Batamaka Some
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Alumnnus

GRID Minor, 2010
PhD in Anthropology, 2010

Current Position

Regional Representative West Africa Collaborative Crop Research Programme (CCRP) of the McKnight Foundation.  Location: Burkina Faso

Please give us an update on your life since graduating from Illinois.

Thank you for the opportunity. Upon completing my doctorate in anthropology in 2010, I worked with non-profit organizations. I first worked at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, within the Market Access team of the Agricultural Development Program. My role was to help hone gender in given projects, as well as to address sociocultural issues that could hinder project objectives. After a year at the foundation, I joined the United Nations' World Food Programme (WFP) in Rome as Gender Advisor, where I led the implementation of the gender strategy of the Purchase for Progress initiative, mostly known as P4P, a pilot initiative that builds on WFP's purchasing power and partners' technical expertise to strengthen smallholder farmers' capacity and integrate them in markets. The P4P pilot, which covered 20 countries in three continents, included 15 countries of Sub-Saharan Africa.  It had a specific focus on women’s economic empowerment through creating enabling environments for them for enjoying the financial benefits of agricultural production and markets. I later occupied a position of Senior Regional Gender Advisor for the West and Central Africa Bureau in Dakar, where I led a USAID-funded project (the Sahel Gender Surge) to completion. But I was feeling the burn of distance and separation with family, and the numerous business travels were of no help. I decided to reunite, and rather work as an independent research consultant; which I’ve been doing and enjoying since 2014. I am currently based in Burkina Faso, my home country, where I relocated since 2014. In the process I carried out assignments, studies and assessments mainly focusing gender and agriculture for various organizations, including the Gates Foundation, the International Livestock Research Institute, The United Nations Development Programme, the World Food Programme, and the Dutch Gender Resource Fund. One recently completed research is a study on the impacts smallholder’s traditional chicken farming household incomes and the implication on nutrition in Burkina Faso. I found it gratifying when I was invited to a side event during the 2016 Forbes 400 Summit on philanthropy to share a stage with the Philanthropist Bill Gates – Co-Chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation – who took further action further the findings of that research. I was also grateful to have been featured in his personal blog in June 2016.

Besides research, I also led trainings in gender mainstreaming in programmes and projects, gave presentations and talks at high-level meeting, and developed gender strategy documents and action plans for implementation. On the social front, I’ve been providing support to community-based organizations to strengthen their capacities in various ways.

I recently accepted the position of Regional Representative, West Africa of the Collaborative Crop Research Programme (CCRP) of the McKnight Foundation. I am very excited about the opportunity, and hope to learn a lot while giving.

What is the focus of your current work and/or subject of your current research?

Since January 2016, I’ve been working on a project on local governance and adaptation to climate change among pastoralists in Southeast Burkina Faso.

How has your GRID minor helped you in your career?

The GRID minor has helped me huge and beyond my expectations and initial motivation that guided me to enrolling in it. Believe it or not, until recently, I have been mostly seen in the profession as a gender specialist, rather than an anthropologist, although my training in anthropology allows to analyze issues at the micro-scale and in a holistic manner that responds to the audience’s expectations. It’s true that I would have felt half-finished, had I got only one aspect of the training I enjoyed here at U of I. Because the research and assignment outputs I produce are a combination of my training in anthropology and gender. And I feel so fortunate I did that minor in GRID along with the strong theoretical and ethnographic training I had through my anthro classes.

Do you have any advice or suggestions for current GRID Students?

Absolutely! Take it more seriously! It has opened a whole and broad career path to me, while I was simply taking the minor for the sake of better understanding issues about gender equality and equity. Today Gender is no longer viewed as a social objective that is  integrated solely in philanthropic and humanitarian programmes. It is called for in all sectors of activity that aims to thrive, including the private sector. In this vein, it was remarkable to see the World Bank Group clearly note in its 2012 Report that considering gender is “smart economics” rather than a mere moral issue. So equipping oneself with a good background in GRID pays forward, especially as each student has their own disciplinary training with which they will streamline their GRID acquisition. So, yes, GRID students should definitely go for it! I will also highly recommend that they consider taking some basic training in quantitative analysis prior to entering the job market. I think a 200 level social statistics class or mastery of statistical software can do. The U of I offers so many prospects that they should grab prior to walking out of this haven of training opportunities.

How can we learn more about your work through social media?

Upcoming Events
2017 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration


A Message from the Chancellor

As the country joins together in January to celebrate the life and legacy of
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., I invite you to take part in some of the commemorative events we’ll see on our campus and in our community. Today, even 49 years after his death, Dr. King’s words and actions and his belief that we must be a nation where everyone has the same opportunities to live and learn continue to inspire all of us.

We have a wide range of opportunities to honor his work, and I truly believe there is something here for everyone to enjoy. From words to music to service events, there are many ways to celebrate the life of Dr. King. I hope you’ll be able to take part in some of them.

Robert J. Jones


Full calendar of events is available at

College of Education at Illinois; College of Fine & Applied Arts; Department of African American Studies; Fraternity & Sorority Affairs; Illini Union Office of Volunteer Programs;Inclusive Illinois; Krannert Center for the Performing Arts; Office of Inclusion & Intercultural Relations; Office of Minority Student Affairs; Office of Public Engagement; Office of the Chancellor; Office of the Provost; School of Social Work

Women's and Gender History Symposium call for papers- Due January 27th

2017 Women’s and Gender History Symposium 

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Theme: Migration and Movement in Women’s and Gender History

Date: March 3, 2017

Submissions and Contact:

Submission Deadline: January 27, 2017


The 17th annual Women’s and Gender History Symposium at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign seeks graduate papers that foreground histories of women, gender, and/or sexuality that pay particular attention to migration and movement broadly defined. We welcome papers from a broad range of time periods, disciplines, and methodologies that engage but are not limited to the following issues:  

-       Movement(s) through and/or within spaces

-       Understandings or contestations of migration and movement within empire

-       Differing types of migration: labor, familial, temporary, permanent, etc.

-       Understandings of diaspora(s)

-       Postcolonial migrations 

This year’s keynote speaker is Karen Flynn, Associate Professor of Gender and Women’s Studies, Associate Professor of Center for African Studies, Assistant Professor of African American Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Professor Flynn is a historian of the Black Atlantic world, with primary research and teaching interests in gender, migration, race, and sexuality.  

Panels will take place the morning and afternoon of March 3rd. The keynote will take place in the evening, followed by a reception. Light breakfast and boxed lunch will also be provided for presenters and participants. Travel grants may also be available.  

We encourage submissions focusing on non-Western and indigenous areas, or on pre-modern periods, along with those that employ interdisciplinary approaches and tools. Papers that engage with space and place studies, disability studies, and/or postcolonial studies are also encouraged. First time presenters and/or MA students are highly welcomed as well. 

Please submit proposals (200-300 words in length) together with a CV to by January 27, 2017.


Student Employment

The Testing Center is looking for a highly dependable student employee who can work primarily 7am-noon on Saturdays and as a floater on other days. Unfortunately due to contractual restrictions we cannot hire an international student. Prefer student who will be still be on campus 2017-18. We need someone who could start as soon as possible due to training and background checks (both are required). The salary is $12/hr. Please submit a resume to to the attention of Coordinator for Computer-based Testing.

WGGP Gender Relations in International Development Graduate Minor

WGGP offers a graduate minor in Gender Relations in International Development (GRID). The GRID interdisciplinary minor is designed to give students the analytical and empirical skills needed to address global human security and gender equity issues in research and policy analysis, as well as daily life. In this age of global economic transformation, it is especially necessary for researchers and practitioners to examine who gains and who loses from new policies, to assess the disparities in the impacts of reforms on women, men, and children, and to study the successful strategies and policies that appear.

To learn more about the GRID minor, please contact Anita Kaiser at or by phone at 333-6221.

SPRING 2017 WGGP Courses

WGGP 581 Gender Relations & International Development (64395) credit: 4 hours.

Interdisciplinary seminar examining theoretical and empirical research on gender and the transformation of social and economic structures. Students will develop a comparative perspective on issues of women and public policy by contrasting and comparing such policies in North and South America, Eastern and Western Europe, Asia, and Africa.
Same as GWS 512 and SOCW 581.

Course will be held Thursdays 2:00-4:50pm

For more information about the GRID Course or the GRID Minor, please contact Anita Kaiser at



GLBL 340 Global Health: Policy & Governance credit: 3 hours.
Identifies central and emerging global health issues and analyzes them through the lenses of governance, policy and gender. Focuses on structural, policy, and institutional perspectives on global health, with emphasis on how decisions are influenced and made. Prerequisite: GLBL 240 or consent of instructor.

63807 Lecture-Discussion
A 11:00 AM- 12:15 PM   Tuesday/Thursday                 145 - Armory               Sugrue, N

In this course, we use a set of interdisciplinary readings and discussions to identify central and emerging issues in the study of global health and analyze them through the lenses of governance, policy and gender. We focus on structural, policy, and institutional perspectives on global health, with emphasis on how decisions are influenced and made. Pre-req: GLBL 240 or consent of instructor.

Spring Courses of Interest


Certificate in

Global Health

Joint with WGGP and LAS Global Studies

Certificate Description

LAS Global Studies, in conjunction with Women and Gender in Global Perspectives (WGGP) is offering a Certificate in Global Health. This certificate is open to all undergraduate majors at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

The Certificate in Global Health will prepare students to engage with issues and problems in global health policy, access, and delivery.

Students will gain fundamental knowledge, critical perspectives, and skills from a range of disciplines in order to understand the complex relationships between health and economic development, local, national, and global institutions, social and cultural norms, environmental sustainability, and the needs of marginalized populations.

This course of study emphasizes:

  • Global health theory and practice
  • Interconnections of poverty, human rights, resources, disasters, migration, displacement, gender, barriers to access and other pressing worldwide issues in Global Helath
  • Interdisciplinary course content including core social science disciplines in the liberal arts such as Anthropology, Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, and Sociology among others

The Certificate in Global Health affords students a credential that demonstrates their competency in interdisciplinary approaches to contemporary global health. Such skills are valued by a range of organizations including governmental and non-governmental organizations, consulting firms, philanthropic organizations, social enterprises, private sector firms, and educational institutions. The core sequence of GLBL courses also provides a meaningful avenue for pre-health students to meet medical school application requirements of social science coursework that demonstrates competencies within a single discipline and at the advanced level.

Students must complete 15 hours of course work that includes three Global Studies courses (listed below) focused on Global Health:

GLBL 240 Global Health (3)

GLBL 340 Global Health Policy (3)** Offered Spring 2017

GLBL 440 Global Health Intervention and Evaluation (3)

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