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Agriculture and climate change – politics behind the policies

CAADP Policy Brief 13

Policy-makers are increasingly focusing on the linkages between agriculture and climate change. Since 2009 African Union members have committed to embracing climate change mitigation and adaptation as integral components of agricultural development. While a number of pilot initiatives are under way, we know little about what this kind of focus on climate change and agriculture will mean in practice. Realising the potentials of agricultural systems for adaption and mitigation is about more than technological choices and farming practices; it is also about politics and power.

This Brief draws on recent research by the Future Agricultures Consortium (FAC) which examines how the agenda for climate-smart agriculture is playing out in practice in Africa, and asks:

Who participates in national agriculture and climate change policy processes? Whose knowledge counts in defining climate-smart agriculture? On whose terms and in whose interests are particular approaches and technologies favoured?
CAADP and Fisheries Policy in Africa: are we aiming for the right reform??

Policy Brief 40by Christophe Béné

There has been much talk in the last few years about how agriculture is key to both poverty reduction and economic growth. In Africa, the New Economic Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) launched the Comprehensive Af rican Agricultural Development Programme (CAADP) in 2003 with the objective to attract significant donor funding for a new push for agricultural development. Although fisheries are officially part of the CAADP, the sector has yet to demonstrate its capacities to contribute to the CAADP objectives. This brief reviews the main policy issues related to fisheries in Africa. It discusses in particular the current model (the so-called “wealth-based approach”) that is being proposed as the overall policy ‘blanket’ for the continent’s fisheries, and examines why this model may not be the most appropriate for African small-scale fisheries.

Can China and Brazil help Africa feed itself?

CAADP Policy Brief 12

The questions of how Africa can feed itself, and how the agricultural sector can be a more effective engine for growth and development, have long been targets of national governments. Western donors have increased assistance following the 2007/8 food price crisis. But the emergence of China and Brazil as major players has raised hopes that innovative agricultural models from the ‘rising powers’ can be transferred or adapted to African countries.

This policy brief draws on latest research findings by Future Agricultures, focusing on engagement in four African countries, and asks:

What are the realities of the different routes and models in China and Brazil’s agricultural development? How are China and Brazil engaging with Africa in agricultural development? How should Africa approach these new engagements - with open arms or cautiously, looking at likely winners and losers?
From technology transfer to innovation systems: sustaining a Green Revolution in Africa

CAADP Policy Brief 07

by Kate Wellard-Dyer

Smallholder agriculture is the core contributor to agricultural production in most African countries and the main driver for food security, poverty reduction and growth. But productivity remains desperately low with limited use of improved inputs (except where boosted by subsidies) – compounded by volatility in climate and markets.

Science and technology is widely seen as essential in turning African agriculture round. The Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) Pillar IV is leading moves to revitalise, expand and reform Africa’s agricultural research and development effort.  Investments are being made by national governments, donors and private funders in (mainly international) research institutions to develop improved seeds and soil fertility technologies for a Green Revolution in Africa. Public and, increasingly, private sector delivery systems are gearing up to deliver these technologies to farmers. Within integrated agricultural research for development (IAR4D), focus is moving beyond the farm-gate to credit, markets and value-addition. Farmers are being involved earlier in the development process – the effectiveness of agricultural technology generation and dissemination institutions seen as depending crucially on relevance and responsiveness to farmer needs.

Yet ‘market-led technology’ approaches – aimed mainly at high potential agricultural areas - face serious challenges in delivering a broaderbased inclusive agricultural revolution.

This policy brief draws on research findings by Future Agricultures and asks:

Are there options outside conventional institutional routes that bring alternative expertise – particularly farmers’ own innovation experience – into revitalised innovation systems that cut across public, private and farmer-led processes? How can agricultural innovation systems be made to work for poor people in expanding market access and enabling rural innovation? Are there alternative pathways for more sustainable and socially-just development, and what obstacles – political-economic as well as technocratic - need to be overcome to pursue these?
High and volatile food prices: Supporting farmers and consumers

CAADP Policy Brief 08by Kate Wellard-Dyer

Food prices are critical for African populations and economies and at the top of the agenda for African policy makers. The CAADP Framework for African Food Security promotes action to address food security challenges faced by stakeholders continent-wide - inadequate food supply, widespread and persistent hunger and malnutrition, and inadequate management of food crises. Addressing the problems of high and volatile food prices requires a multi-pronged approach, including actions both to prevent and mitigate crises.  This policy brief draws on latest research by Future Agricultures and asks:

What are the main causes of high and volatile food prices? What is the impact of food price spikes on rural households and economies? What can policy-makers do to prevent and mitigate the effects of food prices rises?
Large-scale Land Deals, Food Security and Local Livelihoods

CAADP Policy Brief 10by Kate Wellard-Dyer

Large-scale foreign land acquisitions - land grabs - are major and real concerns for African populations.   The consequences of land deals are highly significant for local populations and the environment. Some see economic opportunities for local communities through employment and income generated from leasing or selling land. Others see land alienation as a major threat to local livelihoods, food security and the environment. The question is whether ‘win-win’ models exist - benefitting local people as well as providing an economic return to investors.  This policy brief draws on latest research by Future Agricultures. It asks: What are the drivers behind large-scale land deals in Africa and who are the main players? What is the impact of land deals on livelihoods and food security of existing land users? What can governments do to protect smallholder livelihoods?

French version: Les Transactions Foncières à Grande échelle, la Sécurité Alimentaire et les Moyens de Subsistance
New Paradigms of Agricultural Development Cooperation in Africa: Lessons from Brazil and China

Policy Brief 63by Henry Tugendhat

As Africa attempts to boost agricultural productivity, many countries are turning to Brazil and China for the possibility of alternative approaches and technologies. Both countries have boasted numerous agricultural achievements, and both are increasing their engagements with African partners. The G8/African Union’s New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition bears some similarities with China and Brazil’s efforts, particularly with its aims to “increase responsible domestic and foreign private investments in African agriculture, take innovations that can enhance agricultural productivity to scale, and reduce the risk borne by vulnerable economies and communities”. The UK Department for International Development (DFID) describes this initiative as targeting the creation of “new jobs and market opportunities for small and large farms in African agriculture,” albeit, with a greater discussion of the importance of smallholders. Brazil and China’s ‘cooperation’ efforts in trade, aid and investments provide some key lessons for the New Alliance.

Pastoralism in the Horn of Africa: Diverse livelihood pathways

CAADP Policy Brief 06

by Kate Wellard-Dyer

Pastoralists in the Horn of Africa have struggled for centuries with drought, conflict and famine. They are resourceful, innovative and entrepreneurial peoples, by necessity. While there are profound difficulties in creating secure livelihoods for all, there are also significant successes.

The African Union’s Policy Framework for Pastoralism in Africa recognises pastoralists’ contributions to national and regional economies – supplying huge numbers of livestock and livestock products. Pastoralists’ production systems are highly adaptive and constantly respond to market and climatic change. At the same time human development and food security indicators are amongst the lowest on the continent. The Framework is designed to secure and protect the lives, livelihoods and rights of pastoral peoples, and is a platform for mobilising and coordinating political commitment to pastoral development in Africa.

This policy brief, based on latest research by Future Agricultures Consortium, reviews understandings and misunderstandings about pastoral livelihoods - innovation and entrepreneurship, not just coping and adapting; and cooperation and networking across borders, not just conflict and violence. It highlights the multiple pathways for future development of pastoral areas and offers an alternative view of pastoralism and practical ways forward.

Policy processes and agriculture – what difference does CAADP make?

CAADP Policy Brief 14

It is just over ten years since African Union (AU) Heads of State made their declaration in support of Africa’s agricultural sector in Maputo. Through the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), they committed to a common process for the development and refinement of national agricultural strategies and investment plans, intended to guide the investments of governments, donors and the private sector. This Brief draws on research by the Future Agricultures Consortium on the political and economic context of CAADP in eight African countries (Poulton et al. 2014)and asks:

How does CAADP fit with existing national agricultural strategies and policies? Who and what drives the CAADP process at country level? What value has CAADP added to national agricultural policies?

The findings add to our understanding of how domestic political incentives affect pro-poor agricultural policy in Africa.

Supporting small farmers to commercialise

CAADP Policy Brief 11

Accelerating growth in the agricultural sector by raising the capacities of private entrepreneurs – smallholder and commercial farmers – to meet the increasingly complex requirements of domestic, regional and international markets, is the central aim of CAADP Pillar II.

Commercialisation is about increasing engagement with markets. Smallholder farmers have long been engaged with markets for produce, inputs and information. Urbanisation, better communications and globalisation make understanding smallholder commercialisation all the more important. This policy brief draws on recent research by Future Agricultures and asks:

How do small farmers commercialise? What have been the outcomes of small farmer commercialisation? How can policies support smallholder commercialisation and encourage good outcomes?
The Struggle over the Commons: Annual Savanna Fires and Transnational Mango Outgrower Schemes

Full title:The Struggle over the Commons: Annual Savanna Fires and Transnational Mango Outgrower Schemes in Northern Ghana

FAC Policy Brief 62by Joseph A. Yaro and Dzodzi TsikataJuly 2013

Northern Ghana is characterised by rain fed agriculture, poor infrastructure, food crop production and poor export-oriented agriculture. Large-scale agriculture producing export crops has been one of the many suggestions made to reduce poverty in the region. However, annual savanna fires destroy investments in commercial and food crop agriculture due to a misunderstanding of the nature and purpose of these fires. The underlying causes of fires and their control cannot merely be attributed to overt reasons; they result from socio-political causes such as dissatisfaction with processes of disenfranchisement and social exclusion. This raises many questions regarding the plausibility and efficacy of introducing a modern export-oriented organic mango farming project in improving the local economy of northern Ghana.

This brief examines the Integrated Tamale Fruit Company (ITFC) outgrower farm model, which fits well into the government’s value chain approach to agricultural commercialisation with an export focus. Savanna fires are not necessarily destructive as the current policy formulations prescribe, but an understanding of the varied uses of these fires, the timings and a negotiated management of natural resources including land, is important in regulating the use of fires in ways beneficial to all land users.

Young People and Agri-food: Aspirations, Opportunities and Challenges

CAADP Policy Brief 09by Kate Wellard-Dyer

African governments, international agencies and NGOs are calling for policies which pay more attention to young people and agriculture.  This policy brief draws on research findings by Future Agricultures and asks: What are the expectations and aspirations of young rural men and women? What are the constraints and opportunities facing young people who wish to engage in productive agriculture? How can policies better support young people to engage successfully in the agri-food sector?

French version: Les Jeunes et L’agroalimentaire: Aspirations, Opportunités et Défis
Beyond the Farm Input Subsidy Programme (FISP)? The Political Economy of CAADP Processes in Malawi

Full title: Beyond the Farm Input Subsidy Programme (FISP)? The Political Economy of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) Processes in Malawi

Future Agricultures Working Paper 92 Blessings Chinsinga May 2014

This paper examines the political economy of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) process to which Malawi signed up as a way of fundamentally transforming the agricultural sector to eliminate hunger and reduce poverty According to NEPAD (2011), the overarching goal of CAADP is to reconfigure the way agricultural development issues are formulated, policies are generated and debated, investment decisions are implemented and interventions are scrutinised.

The main concern of this paper from a political economy perspective is to examine the nature of stakeholders’ engagement with the CAADP process, given the already impressive growth performance of the agricultural sector in Malawi. The underlying goal was to understand their interests in engaging with the process, the nature of incentives driving them, the strategies employed to advance, promote and defend their interests and the implications thereof on the attainment of the ideals of the CAADP process. This, in turn, shed a great deal of light on whether or not there is any value addition to the country’s agricultural policy processes as a result of engaging in the CAADP process. Taken together, these exercises helped to identify and understand the political, economic and social processes that promote or block pro-poor change as well as the role of institutions, power and the underlying context for policy processes.

CAADP Ethiopia: A New Start?
Future Agricultures Working Paper 60By Kassahun Berhanu, May 2013

This study examines the motives that underlie the drives of the Ethiopian government in embracing the Comprehensive Africa Agricultural Development Programme (CAADP) as a national plan of action aimed at effecting agricultural transformation. This is despite the fact that Ethiopia had already surpassed the targets set by CAADP for furthering agricultural-led economic growth. The central argument advanced in this study is that Government of Ethiopia (GOE)’s adopting of CAADP is not the outcome of any shift in the already existing domestic political incentives. It is rather prompted by the EPRDF government’s recognition of the limitations of smallholder agricultural growth on one hand and the quest to offset the negative effects of its soured relations with donors in the aftermath of the May 2005 Elections on the other.

The Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) Process in Burkina Faso...

Full title: The Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) Process in Burkina Faso: From False Start to Restart Towards Rural Development?

Working Paper 85 Augustin Loada

This report is about the adoption of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) by Burkina Faso, and tries to assess if it was a simple means of refreshing the country’s agricultural policies or a starting point towards a new rural development policy.

The current research aims at analysing the implementation of the objectives set at Maputo in Burkina Faso, how the CAADP process was rolled out, and the results. The report starts by analysing the existence of political incentives that made possible a number of initiatives for rural development launched by relatively weak institutions. It then shows how Burkina Faso adhered to the CAADP process whose implementation was characterised by an impasse before it restarted through the formulation of a National Programme for the Rural Sector. The report also analyses the driving forces behind this process and identifies the value added springing from the CAADP implementation. Finally we draw lessons for the upcoming agricultural policies. The current case study relies on a document review and discussions with key informants: representatives of donors (Germany, Denmark), decision makers (Permanent Secretary for the Coordination of Sectoral Agriculture Policies), representatives of private sector and civil society.

The Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP): Political Incentives, Value...

Full title: The Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP): Political Incentives, Value Added and Ways Forward

Future Agricultures Working Paper 77 Colin Poulton, Kassahun Berhanu, Blessings Chinsinga, Brian Cooksey, Frederick Golooba-Mutebi and Augustin Loada February 2014

It is now ten years since African Heads of State made their declaration in support of the continent’s agricultural sector in Maputo in July 2003. This paper contributes to a small but growing body of independent critical analysis of CAADP, and to debates on future directions for the programme. The paper draws on studies of CAADP engagement in six countries (Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Malawi, Rwanda and Tanzania) plus preliminary reflections on two more (Kenya and Mozambique). Its particular contribution is to examine CAADP’s interaction with domestic political incentives for support to smallholder agriculture in African countries. Following Poulton 2012, we differentiate countries according to whether the domestic political incentives to invest in smallholder agriculture are strong or weak. In the former, the key question for CAADP is what value it can add to existing policy and planning frameworks for the agriculture sector. In the latter, which are more numerous, the key question is whether the CAADP process contains any mechanisms or provisions that can significantly change the incentives perceived by the governments in question. Experience to date is reviewed and ways forward for CAADP’s second decade are suggested.

What difference has CAADP made to Tanzanian agriculture?

Future Agricultures Working Paper 74Brian CookseyNovember 2013This paper examines the impact of the Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) on Tanzania's agricultural sector. It discusses how CAADP relates to national and regional policy initiatives (including the country's Agriculture and Food Security Investment Plan, the Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor of Tanzania, and the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition) and their governance; the possible impacts of CAADP on spending on agriculture in the country; and the extent of the influence and inclusion of civil society organisations on agricultural policy processes.

CAADP Review And Partnership Platform Meeting (March 17-20, 2008)

By Amdissa Teshome

The Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) is an AUC/NEPAD initiative designed to encourage investment in key areas (pillars) that can make the earliest difference to Africa’s agricultural crises. CAADP was adopted by the Head of States as a framework for the revival of agriculture and officially launched in 2003 at a meeting held in Midrand, South Africa

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Du transfert de technologie jusqu’aux systèmes d’innovation: soutenir une révolution verte en..

Titre complet: Du transfert de technologie jusqu’aux systèmes d’innovation: soutenir une révolution verte en Afrique

CAADP Point Info 07

Les petits agriculteurs sont les principaux acteurs de la production agricole de la plupart des pays africains et les principaux moteurs de la sécurité alimentaire, de la réduction de la pauvreté, et de la croissance. Cependant, la productivité demeure terriblement basse avec une utilisation limitée des intrants améliorés (sauf lorsqu’ils sont soutenus par des subventions) ce qui est aggravé par la volatilité liée au climat et aux marchés.

D’une manière générale, la science et la technologie sont considérées comme étant essentielles pour renverser les tendances de l’agriculture africaine. Le pilier IV du Programme Détaillé de Développement de l’Agriculture Africaine (PDDAA) est chargé de la revitalisation, de l’expansion et de la réforme des études concernant l’agriculture en Afrique et des efforts de développement. Des investissements sont réalisés par les gouvernements nationaux, les donateurs et les organismes de financement privés dans les instituts de recherche (principalement internationaux) en vue de développer des semences améliorées et des technologies visant à accroître la fertilité du sol pour une révolution verte en Afrique. Des systèmes de livraison publics (et, de plus en plus souvent, privés également) se mettent en place pour apporter ces technologies aux agriculteurs. Au sein de la rechercher agricole intégrée pour le développement (IAR4D), les efforts vont à présent au-delà des barrières de l’exploitation agricole et concernent le crédit, les marchés et l’ajout de valeur. Les agriculteurs s’impliquent de manière plus précoce dans le processus de développement: on considère que l’efficacité de la création de technologies agricoles et des organismes de distribution dépend principalement de l’adéquation et de la réactivité aux besoins des agriculteurs.

Cependant les approches « basées sur la technologie » (s’adressant principalement aux espaces agricoles au potentiel élevé) doivent relever des défis considérables afin d’offrir une révolution agricole intégrale et plus large.

Ce document d’orientation s’appuie sur les conclusions des recherches menées par le consortium Future Agricultures et pose des questions essentielles:

Existe-t-il des solutions, en dehors des solutions classiques offertes par les institutions, pour bénéficier d’une expertise extérieure, en particulier l’expérience des agriculteurs eux-mêmes en matière d’innovation, concernant les systèmes redynamisés d’innovation qui rationnalisent les processus publics, privés et des agriculteurs? De quelle manière peut-on adapter les systèmes d’innovation agricole pour qu’ils fonctionnent pour les plus pauvres afin d’accéder aux marchés en expansion et que l’innovation rurale soit facilitée? Existe-t-il des modèles différents pour un développement plus durable et plus juste socialement, et quel sont les obstacles (politiques et économiques, ainsi que technocratiques) qu’il faut surmonter pour les mettre en place?
Le PDDAA et la politique de pêche en Afrique: poursuivons nous une réforme adéquate?

Point info 40 par Christophe Béné

Ces dernières années, on a beaucoup parlé de l’agriculture comme facteur essentiel de réduction de la pauvreté et de croissance économique. En 2003, le Nouveau partenariat économique pour le développement de l’Afrique (NEPAD) a lancé sur le continent africain le Programme detaillé pour le développement de l’agriculture africaine (Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme-CAADP) dans le but d’attirer des contributions significatives de la part des bailleurs de fonds, en vue de donner un nouvel élan au développement agricole. Bien que la pêche fasse officiellement partie du PDDAA, ce secteur doit encore démontrer sa capacité a contribuer aux objectifs du programme. Le présent Point Info passe en revue les principales questions stratégiques relatives a la pêche en Afrique. Il met notamment en question le modèle actuel (l’approche dite ‘basée sur la richesse’, proposé comme ‘couverture tous risques’ des politiques de pêche du continent, et examine pourquoi ce modele n’est peut-être pas le plus adéquat pour les petits pêcheurs africains.