This book has been in the making for almost four years. Over this period many conversations have been had, via new and old technology, and over dinners, lunches and teas; conversations that have no doubt strengthened the book, but also developed our ideas, and clarified some of our doubts. Working in three different countries with different work schedules, teaching and research commitments and deadlines, all three of us have managed to work closely together with each other, and also with our contributors.
We would like to thank Richard Higgott and the Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation for funding a workshop in 1998 on Gender and Empowerment that built on the panel organised by Jane on the same theme at the International Studies Association Conference in Toronto in 1997. Both the workshop and the panel helped us to identify the issues that we wished to see discussed in the book.
All of us would like to thank our contributors for the work they have put into their chapters and for their patience with us as we have struggled to put the book together. We hope they will agree that the book is stronger for the revisions. From all the chapters we learnt a great deal, as is reflected in the introduction. We would also like to thank Susan Rolston for doing such a wonderful job of the final editing work and for pursuing each missing reference with determination tempered with good humour. Many thanks to the Routledge production staff and to the politics and international studies section, particularly Heidi Bagtazo and her assistant, Grace McInnes. Many thanks also to our external reviewer, who provided constructive suggestions and encouraging support for the concept and the book.
Jane would like to thank the many colleagues around the world who have contributed to her thinking on gender and empowerment, particularly participatory approaches to empowerment. The chapter on PRA has been presented in such diverse places as Uganda, Denmark, South Africa and Trinidad as well as Canada. It has benefited from close scrutiny, critical comments and suggestions for improvements, not only from fellow academics but also from practitioners (including the growing number of people who manage to do both). She is particularly grateful to Diana Rivington at CIDA and Neeru Shrestha at the International Development Research Centre in Ottawa for arranging stimulating meetings with their colleagues. She would also like to thank friends and