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Repositionning Agricultural Extension and advisory services to contribute effectively to inclusive CSA and Resilient Africa

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Repositionning Agricultural Extension and advisory services to contribute effectively to inclusive CSA and Resilient Africa

  1. 1. Margaret Najjingo Mangheni, PhD Associate Professor, Department of Extension and Innovation Studies Makerere University, Uganda Founder/Board Member, AFAAS and UFAAS Agricultural Extension Week 2017 Durban, South Africa October 30, 2017 Repositioning Agricultural Extension and advisory services to contribute effectively to inclusive Climate Smart Agriculture and Resilient Africa
  2. 2. Presentation outline • The status of African agriculture, opportunities and constraints • Defining Climate Smart Agriculture, inclusiveness and resilience • Traditional role of Agric Extension and Advisory Services (AEAS) • Suggestions for repositioning agricultural extension and advisory services • Conclusion
  3. 3. The status of African agriculture: emerging opportunities Changes in Africa’s agri-food systems: • Agri-food systems transforming from subsistence-oriented and farm-centered to more commercialized, off-farm centered • Agricultural value chains are becoming more urbanized and consumer driven (AGRA 2017)
  4. 4. The status of African agriculture: emerging opportunities • Demand for food is growing; projected to at least double by 2050; WHY? 1. Taste and diets shifting from food staples like grains towards more horticultural and livestock products, and processed and pre-cooked foods. 2. Food systems becoming more urban based and consumer driven, with a premium on quality and food safety.
  5. 5. The status of African agriculture: emerging opportunities Drivers: rapid urbanization, rising incomes, globalization, population growth, and a growing share of young people. (AGRA 2017). Urbanization-- 37% of the population urban and projected to reach 56% by 2050 (UN, 2014).
  6. 6. The status of African agriculture: emerging opportunities Food imports growing rapidly (continent’s food import bill about US$30–50 billion)
  7. 7. The status of African agriculture emerging opportunities This dynamic is creating many new growth and employment opportunities in agricultural value chains including: i) Value addition by small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in agricultural trade, farm servicing, agro- processing, urban retailing and food services. ii) Large agribusinesses like seed companies, agro- processors, and supermarkets iii) Smallholder farmers to finally transition their enterprises into thriving businesses.
  8. 8. The status of African agriculture: emerging opportunities Governments through new extension systems have the opportunity to leverage these spontaneous dynamics to create even more growth in productive employment and income, and in ways that benefit young people, women and the poor.
  9. 9. The status of African agriculture: emerging opportunities Africa’s agricultural transformation focus: • A market driven, business agenda that encompasses the entire food system, not just agricultural production. • Improvement in nutrition outcomes • Inclusiveness
  10. 10. Defining Inclusive Growth Better life for ALL as laid out in the Malabo Declaration, in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and in Africa’s Agenda 2063 including: - Africa’s smallholder farmers (men, women, youth) -Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in the agri-food system. -Large agribusinesses.
  11. 11. The Climate Change Challenge!!! Need to make farming and value chains more resilient to shocks from climate change through: •Climate Smart practices that sustainably increasing agricultural productivity and incomes •Adapting and building resilience to climate shocks •Reducing and/or removing greenhouse gas emissions, where possible.
  12. 12. The Climate Change Challenge!!! • Human capital is the single most important resource that Africa has. The human capital manages all other capitals. • Agricultural extension and advisory services have a key role –providing Information, knowledge, skills, technologies, institutions, partnerships and networks, services.
  13. 13. Role of Agricultural Extension and Advisory Services Originally extension conceived as service to “extend” research- based knowledge to rural sector to improve their livelihoods; Traditional focus on increasing production, improving yields, training farmers, and transferring technology TRADITIONAL EXTENSION SEVERELY CHALLANGED
  14. 14. Repositioning agricultural extension New focus areas: • Clientele • Government extension organizations • Capacities • Expertise • Methods and approaches • Policies and institutions
  15. 15. Repositioning: (1) New type of clientele Type of clientele is changing: • Beyond farmers to include other actors in the agri-food innovation system/value chains • Beyond subsistence farmers to commercial farmers and other SME investors • Private sector clients who are profit motivated, dynamic, time conscious
  16. 16. Repositioning: (1) New type of clientele The ‘new’ type of farmer served: • Business oriented • Well networked locally, regionally, and even internationally • Empowered—can demand for services, hold government and service providers accountable, negotiate favorable terms with other actors
  17. 17. Repositioning: (1) New type of clientele –the youth The youth bulge opportunity—youth are over 60% in the continent; over 35% in many countries and form the majority of the unemployed. They are many, strong, have time, tech- savvy……with unique needs e.g may have a negative attitude to agriculture, less access to resources, unique enterprise preferences etc…
  18. 18. Repositioning: (1) New type of clientele--youth Have immense potential to activate the transformation of increased production, productivity, quality adherence and access to global markets. “Africa’s youth bulge is the secret to a cool, profitable agriculture” (Gabriel Rugalema and Joy Mulema, The East African newspaper Sept 16-22, 2017)
  19. 19. Repositioning: ...refocusing the AEAS The emerging farmer: • Has Mobile phone, internet, radio, etc. • Networking, active participation etc. • Access to multiple information sources • Women A farmer in Kibirichia, Kenya. Photo by Neil
  20. 20. Repositioning: (2) Government extension organizations The traditional Ministries of Agriculture structures not suited to new set up because: • Bureaucratic, not result oriented, rigid, • Inappropriate reward/incentive systems-low pay not linked to performance, weak supervision and accountability systems • Limited opportunities for continuous skills updating • Under resourced
  21. 21. Repositioning: (2) Government extension organizations • Organizational structures don’t have clear/operational linkages with other services and actors that support climate smart market oriented agriculture (research, markets, financing, processing and value addition, food quality standards, environment and natural resources management, meteorology and weather forecasting……)
  22. 22. Repositioning: (2) Government extension organizations • Extension workers isolated in the countryside with no link to headquarters. • Impact of extension not easy to demonstrate; therefore local governments spend on visible projects like roads which win votes and less on extension.
  23. 23. Repositioning: (2) Government extension organizations • Structures not suited to pluralism-- Many actors/service providers who are not coordinated and regulated Government taking a back seat
  24. 24. Repositioning: (2) Government extension organizations • Private services are important but not sufficient • Strong public sector still needed Coordination and Financing Setting direction Regulation and quality assurance Championing public interests Equipping and facilitating a new Extension worker—well networked, skilled, business mindset, knowledgeable etc….
  25. 25. Repositioning: (3) Developing capacities for new roles Beyond technology transfer to: • Facilitation of innovation; • Assisting farmer groups to form and organize, • Dealing with marketing and financial issues, insurance and risk management • Partnering with a broad range of service providers and other agencies This calls for new demands and capacities on AEAS
  26. 26. Repositioning: (4) New expertise • Extension organizations to recruit staff with qualifications and diversity of disciplines e.g Social sciences, ICT, business management, economics, statistics and data/information management, natural resource management and environment, nutrition, gender etc..and not just agriculture.
  27. 27. Repositioning: (5) Methods and approaches Experiment with cost effective approaches that: • Harness ICTS and other opportunities • Facilitate independent and collaborative learning, Innovation, and empowerment • Are suitable for the various clientele types- women, youth, private entrepreneurs .
  28. 28. Repositioning: (5) Methods and approaches Examples of emerging approaches: • Market oriented approaches • Competitive calls for existing innovations • Innovation grants • Incubation of innovations and businesses • Mobile phone and internet based information approaches
  29. 29. Repositioning: (6) Policies and institutions Government guidelines on: • Institutional framework for pluralistic agricultural extension services • Regulation and quality assurance • Human Resource Management and Capacity Development • Agribusiness Development Services and Market Linkages • Targeting women, youth, and private sector • Agricultural Knowledge Management and Information
  30. 30. Repositioning: (6) Policies and institutions • Need for agricultural extension actors to be networked & organized at national, regional and continental levels e.g AFAAS, Sub Regional Fora, national Country Fora, SASAE
  31. 31. What national and continental networks Offer? • Information and experience sharing through different platforms (face to face, virtual social networking etc) • Mobilize a pool of experts to backstop and catalyse country-level AEAS • Capacity strengthening for AAS stakeholders • Scaling up and out of innovations • Network with and create continental and global level partnerships • Championing Knowledge Management in AEAS • Policy and advocacy for AEAS
  32. 32. Conclusion • Need for critical reflection to determine what needs to change to suit the changed context—climate change, emerging clientele of extension—private sector, youth, women etc. • Hope this conference will provide a platform/space for such reflection and crafting of new more effective approaches to position Africa as a global food basket.
  33. 33. Appreciation http://www.afaas-africa.org http://networking.afaas-africa.org
  34. 34. Thank you for your kind attention

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