Missing the Woods for the Trees: Mechanical Engineer and Feminist Anthropologist Connect the Local and Global

Wednesday, March 13, 2013 - 4:00pm
Event Location: 
Obermann Center
111 Church Street
Iowa City, IA 52242

Improving the Lives of Women and Girls with a Solar Cooker

Women and children from northwest India spend more than twenty hours a week walking to existing stands of trees, cutting down wood, and carrying as much as 70 pounds home to use as cooking fuel. As part of an Obermann Working Group, H.S. Udaykumar (Mechanical Engineering, College of Engineering) and Meena Khandelwal (Anthropology and GWSS, CLAS) have forged a unique collaboration around this issue. They are looking at how an inexpensive solar cooker that Udaykumar is creating with student assistance would alleviate not only problems of deforestation but also improve the lives of women and girls.

During this Obermann Afternoons, the two will discuss their efforts to trace the linkages between forests, energy, gender relations, health, consumption, and culture, and between the local and global processes. Khandelwal and Udaykumar direct an Obermann Working Group.