Agricultural research in Sub-Saharan Africa: Trends, challenges and ways of moving forward

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Presentation made by Nienke Beintema …

Presentation made by Nienke Beintema
at the Biennial Conference, 2012

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  • 1. Agricultural research in Sub-Saharan Africa:Trends, challenges and ways of moving forwardNienke BeintemaASTI program head | International Food Policy Research Institute3rd RUFORUM Biennial Regional ConferenceEntebbe, Uganda | 24–28 September 2012
  • 2. Outline presentation• Background• Overall trends in public agricultural R&D (ASTI synthesis)*• Investment and human resource capacity challenges (ASTI synthesis)*• Current institutional architecture and its challenges (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)• Options for moving forward (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)** See WWW.ASTI.CGIAR.ORG (regional synthesis report + conference synthesis available at IFPRI booth)
  • 3. Agricultural Science and Technology Indicators (ASTI) • Collection of national-level investment and human resource capacity data on agricultural R&D: – Focus on low- and middle-income countries (coverage ± 60) – Through institutional survey rounds (primary data) • Through a large collaborative network of national, regional and international partners; facilitated by IFPRI • Aim is to provide: – Trends over time at country / regional levels; within countries – Comparisons across countries / regions; within countries
  • 4. ASTI activities in Sub-Saharan Africa • 2008-09 data collection round: – In close collaboration with SROs and national partners – Coverage: 500 government , higher-education, and nonprofit agencies in 32 countries • Currently: Transformation to a regular and decentralized data collection and analysis system • Current survey round: expansion in number of countries, indicators, and and sion in number of indicators and additional analysis
  • 5. Outline presentation• Background• Overall trends in public agricultural R&D (ASTI synthesis)*• Investment and human resource capacity challenges (ASTI synthesis)*• Current institutional architecture and its challenges (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)• Options for moving forward (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)** See WWW.ASTI.CGIAR.ORG (regional synthesis report + conference synthesis available at IFPRI booth)
  • 6. SSA’s long-term spending and capacity trends • Overall, agricultural R&D investments and capacity increased by about 20 percent during 2001-08
  • 7. Main drivers of spending growth, 2001-08 • Growth occurred in a few countries and focused on boosting low salaries and rehabilitating infrastructure
  • 8. Main drivers of researcher growth, 2001-08 • Nigeria, Ethiopia, Sudan, and Kenya accounted for most of the growth during 2000-08
  • 9. Changing composition of agricultural R&D • The role of the higher education sector in agricultural research continues to increase 100 Share of FTE resaerchers (%) 15% 20% Higher education 24% 80 Nonprofit Government 60 40 82% 77% 73% 20 0 1991 2001 2008
  • 10. Outline presentation• Background• Overall trends in public agricultural R&D (ASTI synthesis)*• Investment and human resource capacity challenges (ASTI synthesis)*• Current institutional architecture and its challenges (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)• Options for moving forward (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)** See WWW.ASTI.CGIAR.ORG (regional synthesis report + conference synthesis available at IFPRI booth)
  • 11. Investment challenge: Uneven growth • 2001-08 marked by decline in 13 countries (including many in francophone West Africa); for some decline began in 1990s
  • 12. Investment challenge: Underinvestment • Common target: Allocation of at least 1 % of GDP to R&D • In 2008, Africa spent $0.61 for every $100 of AgGDP on agricultural R&D
  • 13. Investment challenge: Donor dependency • Many countries are 100 extremely Share in total funding, 2001-08 (%) 80 dependent on Spread of donor funding and 60 donor share development bank 40 loans 20 Average donor • Donor funding is share generally short- 0 term and ad- Madagascar Togo Mauritania Eritrea Benin Tanzania Zambia Mauritius Namibia Senegal Gambia Mali Kenya Niger Côte dIvoire Burundi Uganda Botswana Burkina Faso South Africa Ghana Guinea hoc, adding to the volatility
  • 14. Investment challenge: Volatility 40 Burkina Faso • Agricultural R&D spending 30 20 in Africa has been more Agricultural R&D spending (miilion 2005 PPP $) 10 0 1981 1985 1989 1993 1997 2001 2005 volatile than in other 440 330 Nigeria regions 220 110 0 • Volatility more pronounced 1981 1985 1989 1993 1997 2001 2005 4 Gabon in donor-dependent low- 3 2 income countries 1 0 1991 1994 1997 2000 2003 2006 40 Niger 30 20 10 0 1981 1985 1989 1993 1997 2001 2005
  • 15. Investment /capacity challenge: Fragmentation 32 African countries Brazil China India USIndicators (2008) 2006 2007 2003 2008Number of public agricultural research agencies 353 130 1,105 131 51Number of public agricultural researchers (FTEs) 12,120 5,376 70,000 13,089 9,965Annual public spending on agricultural R&D (million 2005 PPP dollars) 1,741 1,307 3,626 1,426 4,825
  • 16. Capacity challenge: Decreasing qualifications • Shares of BSc-qualified staff have increased in some countries since 2000 100Shares of FTE researchers (%) 29% 30% 80 60 47% 43% 40 20 24% 27% 0 2001 2008 BSc MSc PhD
  • 17. Capacity challenge: High staff turnover • Staff departures and an aging pool of well-qualified researchers remain major areas of concern for many countries 100 Average age of researchers, 2010 Shares of departed researchers (%) 80 Degree NARI BSc MSc PhD Total 60 ARC, South Africa 39.9 40.8 48.5 43.4 40 ISRA, Senegal — 55.7 47.3 49.6 KARI, Kenya 41.6 45.1 49.5 45.1 20 ZARI, Zambia 36.4 42.0 50.0 39.7 0 ISRA Senegal KARI Kenya ZARI Zambia Retirement Death Resignation Transfer/leave Source: Sene et al 2011
  • 18. Capacity challenge: Limited training opportunities • During 1970s and 1980s, many countries received considerable donor support for staff training abroad but by the late 1990s, many donors had cut/eliminated funding for training • SSA universities have been facing a number of constraints such as increased workloads, which has affected quality of teaching and student supervision • Large influx of young less-qualified researchers combined with staff turnover has strained the capacity of institutions to provide adequate mentoring by senior researchers • New initiatives/networks: how to scale up?
  • 19. Outline presentation• Background• Overall trends in public agricultural R&D (ASTI synthesis)*• Investment and human resource capacity challenges (ASTI synthesis)*• Current institutional architecture and its challenges (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)• Options for moving forward (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)** See WWW.ASTI.CGIAR.ORG (regional synthesis report + conference synthesis available at IFPRI booth)
  • 20. Institutional architecture – current situation• Currrent “architectural structures” of agricultural R&D have significantly evolved over past 4 decades• Other actors: CGIAR (actor), FARA/ASARECA/CORAF/ CCARDESA (network), others• NARIs remain primary instrument of agricultural R&D in most countries (80%)• Agricultural Productivity Programs (WAAPP/EAAPP), funded by World Bank loans, are transforming a number of NARIs to become “regional centers of excellence”
  • 21. Institutional architecture – challenges• NARIs remain the vehicles through which the regional programs are implemented and CGIAR centers collaborate: they therefore need a critical level of capacity• Differentiation between large- and small-country systems and how can smaller countries more effectively access relevant technologies and research capacities through regional and international programs• Agricultural R&D within the wider innovation system: Mechanisms to support increased interactions and enhance research linkages at subregional and international levels are often underdeveloped at NARI level.
  • 22. Outline presentation• Background• Overall trends in public agricultural R&D (ASTI synthesis)*• Investment and human resource capacity challenges (ASTI synthesis)*• Current institutional architecture and its challenges (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)• Options for moving forward (ASTI/IFPRI–FARA conference)** See WWW.ASTI.CGIAR.ORG (regional synthesis report + conference synthesis available at IFPRI booth)
  • 23. Sustainable finance • Mobilize greater government support for agricultural R&D • Coordinate donor support with national priorities • Develop policy reforms to facilitate private-sector participation
  • 24. Human resource development • Halt the prevailing high turnover of agricultural scientists through a series of measures • Develop innovative training methods • Strengthen institutional capacity to create an enabling environment • Increase financial support by governments and donor organizations
  • 25. Aligning and rationalizing institutional structures • Encourage an African funding base to support the supranational research agenda • Improve institutional linkages (NARI, regional, other) through the new CGIAR system • Undertake further fact-finding and analysis
  • 26. THANK YOU