Enhancing Capacity for African Agricultural Research: Conceptual Framework, Models, and Lessons
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Enhancing Capacity for African Agricultural Research: Conceptual Framework, Models, and Lessons

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By Suresh Chandra Babu, Irene Annor Frempong, and Kwadwo Asenso-Okyere. ...

By Suresh Chandra Babu, Irene Annor Frempong, and Kwadwo Asenso-Okyere.
Presented at the ASTI-FARA conference Agricultural R&D: Investing in Africa's Future: Analyzing Trends, Challenges, and Opportunities - Accra, Ghana on December 5-7, 2011. http://www.asti.cgiar.org/2011conf

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  • The CAADP process is driven by the implementation of four strategic pillars (CAADP, 2008). These are: Extending the area under sustainable land management and reliable water control systems (Pillar I); Improving rural infrastructure and trade-related capacities for improved market access (Pillar II); Increasing food supply and reducing hunger (Pillar III); and Agricultural research, technology dissemination and adoption (Pillar IV).
  • Pillar IV develops a common framework for action to increase agric productivity and supports the mainstreaming of the actions. It also supports the mobilization of the resources (knowledge, funding, partnerships and expertise) & advocacy for policies required to implement these actions effectively. The framework articulates strategic issues, success factors, best practices and policy orientations Pillar IV outputs feed into the pre-compact and post-compact processes. This is the entry point for their impact. In the diagram, commitment is by all actors but especially the policy/political ones.
  • The productivity referred to here is Total Factor Productivity—covering land productivity, labour productivity and profitability. Thus productivity is not reliant on production efficiency alone but on other factors such as access to productive resources (land & water), infrastructure, well functioning markets, etc— issues that are programmed in other CAADP pillars. Similarly, other pillars rely on pillar IV for inputs regarding research, extension & education. Hence the pillars are mutually reinforcing.
  • These elements are in line with the CAADP Pillar IV agenda outlined in preceding slides.
  •   For the University of Kwazulu-Natal program, while the university leads the program, it works with the national research institutions in eastern and southern Africa region to bring in young researchers to work with experienced plant breeders towards a Ph.D. degree. The students are supported by the Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA). The ACCI currently trains plant breeders from 10 countries in east and southern Africa - South Africa, Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia, Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia and Rwanda.   The ACCI predicts that a total of 440 breeders are currently needed for crop improvement research of 11 crops in the east and southern Africa region. Yet with the completion of the program by the current cohort of participants ACCI would have trained only 84 breeders. Although other PhD programs in breeding such as the one run by RUFORUM and the MS level programs in Makerere (Uganda), Sokoine (Tanzania), and Eduardo Mondlane (Mozambique), will add to this number, the demand for breeders in the region far exceeds the current supply.
  • In order to strengthen the policy analysis capacity and the capacity for agricultural economics and farm management issues, the Collaborative Master’s Program in Agriculture and Applied Economics (CMAAE) was established in 2000. It is a network of 16 faculties of agricultural economics and agribusiness in 16 universities in eastern, central, and southern Africa. The major objective of CMAAE is to bring together specialized capacities of the regional universities that are scattered in various departments and faculties to collectively create future capacity for agricultural economics and policy research. The three specific objectives of the program include: produce high quality M.Sc. agricultural and applied economics graduates; upgrade the teaching and research capacity of departments currently in the program and initiate planning for a system to scale out the program to other regions of Sub-Saharan Africa; and strengthen a continental research network to promote agricultural development

Enhancing Capacity for African Agricultural Research: Conceptual Framework, Models, and Lessons Enhancing Capacity for African Agricultural Research: Conceptual Framework, Models, and Lessons Presentation Transcript

  • Enhancing Capacity for African Agricultural Research: Selected Models and Lessons     Agricultural R&D—Investing in Africa’s Future: Analyzing Trends, Challenges, and Opportunities Accra, Ghana December 5-7, 2011
  • Overview of the Presentation
    • Introduction
    • The Context of CAADP Process and Capacity Development
    • Three Case Studies
    • Key Lessons
    • Conclusions
  • Introduction
    • Key developments in CAADP
    • Capacity for achieving CAADP goals
    • Capcity of Pillar IV
    • The capcity Dilemma – Do the research with external assistance or build capacity
    • How to accomplish both?
    • What works? Why?
  • The Four Pillars of CAADP
    • The CAADP process is driven by the implementation of four strategic pillars (CAADP, 2008).
    • These are:
    • Extending the area under sustainable land management and reliable water control systems (Pillar I);
    • Improving rural infrastructure and trade-related capacities for improved market access (Pillar II);
    • Increasing food supply and reducing hunger (Pillar III); and
    • Agricultural research, technology dissemination and adoption (Pillar IV).
  • The CAADP Process
    • Key elements
    • Engagement of the stakeholders
    • Evidence –based, Demand driven
    • Programming
    • Better enabling environment
    • Assessment, learning, adaptation
  • CAADP’s mutually reinforcing pillars/themes FARA is the lead institution for Pillar IV Agricultural Research Technology Dissemination & Adoption, and Capacity Strengthening 1 Increasing food supply and reducing hunger 1 2 3 4
  • How Pillar IV contributes to CAADP’s vision Pillars I, II, III & IV Effective policies, support services and actions Pillar Frameworks Frameworks for action Agric. Sector Compacts & Investment Plans Commitment, Partnership, Investment & Accountability Knowledge Systems Evidence based planning and implementation CAADP Vision
    • Hunger eliminated, and poverty and food insecurity reduced
      • through sustainable agriculturally-led development that preserves the natural resource base
  • The specific objectives of Pillar IV
    • Develop technologies, policies and institutional innovations that provide solutions to poverty and resource degradation in Africa
    • Test the adaptability of these options in a participatory and iterative fashion, from farm to regional scale
    • Develop appropriate mechanisms for wide-scale dissemination and adoption of technologies and for implementation of sustainable and supportive policies and institutional options
    • Empower resource-poor farmers in Africa to manage their natural resources and systems sustainably
  • Research, Technology Dissemination and Adoption
    • Focuses on increasing agricultural productivity
      • Contributes to CAADP goal of 6% annual growth in agricultural productivity through research, advisory services, education and training
  • Model for integration of research, extension, education and training under CAADP Pillar IV African Union AUC & AU-NPCA CAADP Increasing scale of domestic investments in agric. Productivity (African Govts) Aligned and coordinated support (Development Partners) Enhanced African Agricultural Innovation Capacity Improved productivity, competitiveness and markets GFAR, GFRAS GCHERA Research SROs, NARS, CGIAR Farmer empowerment PAFFO, PanAAC PANGOC Education RUFORUM, ANAFE REESAO, AAU Extension AFAAS Networking Support FAAP FARA Evolution and Reform of agric. institutions
  • Framework for African Agricultural Productivity (FAAP)
    • Principal elements of the FAAP
    Evolution and reform of agricultural institutions and services Aligned and coordinated financial support Increasing the scale of Africa's agricultural productivity investments
  • Reforms Integrated capacity strengthening University impact has to be more development oriented
    • Students are taught
    • in critical & systemic thinking i.e. integration of disciplines and knowledge system
    • to build skills for facilitating interactive learning
    • Professors are encouraged;
    • Continuously situated
    • to change mindsets and build values that support new ways of thinking and learning
  • CAADP Capacity Development Framework
    • Core Principles under Discussion
    • Identifying gaps for capacity
    • Mutual learning and sharing of knowledge
    • Efficient approaches to capacity development
    • Institutional and organizational capacities
    • Adopting global standards but contextualizing to local needs
    • Ensuring local use of capacity
  • Review of 3 Approaches
    • African Center for Crop Improvement - ACCI - PhD program in Plant Breeding
    • Collaborative Master’s Program in Agricultural And Applied Economics –CMAAE
    • Strengthening the Capacity of Agricultural Research and Development in Africa (SCARDA)
  • African Center for Crop Improvement - ACCI - PhD program in Plant Breeding
    • The Challenge - lack of Plant breeders for improving productivity of agriculture
    • The Approach – Good training in Methods – practical thesis work in host country
    • Achievements – quality graduates doing research for their own countries
    • Cost and funding – externally funded
  • Collaborative Master’s Program in Agricultural and Applied Economics –CMAAE of the African Economic Research Consortium
    • The Approach: bring together the scattered strength of faculty and offer a collaborative program
    • Achievement: successful in generating high quality capacity that is absorbed by the country institutions
    • Improvement needed: completion rates for thesis work
    • Cost is relatively higher compared to other African programs
    • Sustainability depends on continued external funding although self supporting students are increasing
    The challenge: huge demand for applied economists but weak faculties resulting in low quality analysts
  • Strengthening the Capacity of Agricultural Research and Development in Africa (SCARDA)
    • The Challenge: institutional capacity for ARM and improvement of quality of science
    • The Approach: Holistic, build on strength, participatory, learning, gender and social inclusion
    • Achievements: MSc, ARM, Short professional skills, gender mainstreamed
    • Implementation: Over ambitious, time consuming, subsidiarity principle, delayed M&E
    • Demand driven
    • Needs assessment / Institutional Analysis
    • Effective delivery mechanisms
    • Contextualize for local needs
    Lessons from Case studies
    • Ensure local use of capacity
    • Mutual Learning and Sharing
    • Funding and sustainability
  • Concluding Remarks
    • Capacity development needs a long term investment
    • It is possible to build capacity while implementing programs
    • ( ACCI, CMAAE, SARDA)
    • Use of existing strengths can speed up the process (CMAAE)
    • Host institutions needs to mentor participants after training
    • ( ACCI, SCARDA)
    • Locally identified capacity gaps, demand driven program with sustained funding can be successful
  • Thank you for the attention www.fara-africa.org
  • Selected Indicators of Capacity Development in the Context of CAADP Process Selected Process Indicators / Programs ACCI CMAAE SCARDA Demand Driven The program was developed as a result of high need felt by the African agricultural research community The program emerged from several levels of regional consultations The program is a result an expressed need from the stakeholders of FARA through various consultations Needs Assessment The needs assessment revealed the critical need for breeders who could do adaptive research in various African crops. Needs assessment revealed the strengths and weaknesses of various faculties and how to bring the existing capacities together for generating quality capacity The needs assessment indicated the need of application of subsidiarity principles and for strengthening the institutional capacity in addition to individual capacity Capacity Delivery Mechanism Combined both the teaching and rigorous training by the University of Kwazulu-Natal and the practical training through mentors in the local institutions. This helps to address local problems and made the capacity develop highly relevant for the participants’ country Effectively used the African capacity although additional external support was sought to fill the gaps in teaching. The shared facility approach was efficient in increasing the quality of the program jointly. SCARDA’s approach to capacity development focused on strengthening the whole organization giving emphasis on filling the gaps in the skills of the individuals. This is in line with the CAADP process needs for capacity development
  • Selected Indicators of Capacity Development in the Context of CAADP Process Selected Process Indicators / Programs ACCI CMAAE SCARDA Contextualization of the capacity for local needs ACCI participants applied their knowledge to solving problems they faced in their own countries While the theoretical training was common to all the graduates in the applied areas of the program, the participants applied their skills to address the socio-economic problems of their countries Capacity developed under SCARDA was meant to directly influence the organization and management of the research organizations. Such contextualized approach helped to give individual attention to the participating organizations Ensuring utilization of capacity by local organizations The participants came from the research institutions in various countries who went back to their jobs for conducting Thesis research. Thus the capacity developed was used effectively by host institutions. While the capacity developed is of high quality, due to high demand for the applied economics capacity, the graduates have found placements that contribute to the agricultural development process in their countries. SCARDA strengthened the existing capacity without any adverse effect on capacity loss for the organizations. Mutual Learning and Sharing of Knowledge Sharing of knowledge on problems and solutions were facilitated by bringing students to Kwazulu-Natal for common training in methods of plant breeding The Shared facility approach brought students from various participating countries for specific learning goals. This helped in mutual learning among the participants. SCARDA programs provided adequate opportunities for mutual learning. Funding and Sustainability Depends on donor funding to support participation of the international students. Continues to depend on external sources of funding, although recently several self-sponsoring students and government sponsored student have joined the program Uncertainty in funding and the dependency on external resources for program implementation remain challenges for long term planning