Social and religious prejudice militates against the full integration of women in development programmes, regardless of the fact that 'traditional' occupations of women in developing countries concern both agriculture and nutrition, and that backwardness in these areas is a fundamental obstacle to general development. Lack of progress in population control and control of disease is also aggravated by women's lack of education and their non-participation in development. Underutilization of human resources is another result, unemployment in general under the present systems contributing to the restriction of women's participation. Lack of participation by women may result in the ineffectiveness of such programmes and a retarding of national development.
2. Women are custodians and wise users of traditional knowledge systems that have been passed down to them for generations. This traditional knowledge is alive and appropriate and women apply it on a daily basis as they utilize and manage primary natural resources to meet the basic needs of their families and communities.