This section lists books written by, or with contributions from Future Agricultures Consortium researchers.
Our contributions to books allow us to explore issues in detail. They often involve working with other researchers to share new ideas and findings on topics important to agricultural policy in Africa - from seasonality to innovation among pastoralists.
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This book is the culmination of a considerable amount of new and important research on seed systems, both within Ethiopia and across Africa. Drawing together a large collection of papers presented at the ‘International Conference on Sustainable Seed Systems in Ethiopia: Challenges and Opportunities’, hosted by the Ethiopian Institute of Agriculture Research, Addis Ababa, in June 2011, it provides insights into the latest innovations in seed system research and development, the evolving role and performance of the formal and informal seed sectors and the potential for their integration and, significantly, the political economic and institutional factors shaping national and regional seed policy and processes.
In this respect, the book comprises more than simply a set of ‘defining moments’ in the evolution of Ethiopia’s own seed system, as it raises fundamental questions about the opportunities and challenges facing seed system development in Africa at a time of increasing change and uncertainty. Above all, this collection makes it clear that it is essential to focus on issues of diversity—in gene pools, in seed and crop varieties, in agronomic practices, in training and technical support, in production and delivery systems, in resulting landscapes, and in the way we go about appraising and pursuing— divergent trajectories in knowledge, innovation, and development with regard to seed systems.
- Publisher: Ethiopian Institute of Agriculture Research
- Editors: Adfris T/Wold, Asnake Fikre, Dawit Alemu, Lemma Desalegn, Abebe Kirub
Once again, the Horn of Africa has been in the headlines. And once again the news has been bad: drought, famine, conflict, hunger, suffering and death. The finger of blame has been pointed in numerous directions: to the changing climate, to environmental degradation, to overpopulation, to geopolitics and conflict, to aid agency failures, and more. But it is not all disaster and catastrophe. Many successful development efforts at ‘the margins’ often remain hidden, informal, sometimes illegal; and rarely in line with standard development prescriptions. If we shift our gaze from the capital cities to the regional centres and their hinterlands, then a very different perspective emerges. These are the places where pastoralists live. They have for centuries struggled with drought, conflict and famine. They are resourceful, entrepreneurial and innovative peoples. Yet they have been ignored and marginalised by the states that control their territory and the development agencies who are supposed to help them.
This book argues that, while we should not ignore the profound difficulties of creating secure livelihoods in the Greater Horn of Africa, there is much to be learned from development successes, large and small.
This book will be of great interest to students and scholars with an interest in development studies and human geography, with a particular emphasis on Africa. It will also appeal to development policy-makers and practitioners.
This book is published in the STEPS Centre's Pathways to Sustainability book series.
The dramatic increases in food prices experienced over the last four years, and their effects of hunger and food insecurity, as well as human-induced climate change and its implications for agriculture, food production and food security, are key topics within the field of agronomy and agricultural research. Contested Agronomy addresses these issues by exploring key developments since the mid-1970s, focusing in particular on the emergence of the neoliberal project and the rise of the participation and environmental agendas, taking into consideration how these have had profound impacts on the practice of agronomic research in the developing world especially over the last four decades.
This book explores, through a series of case studies, the basis for a much needed ‘political agronomy’ analysis that highlights the impacts of problem framing and narratives, historical disjunctures, epistemic communities and the increasing pressure to demonstrate ‘success’ on both agricultural research and the farmers, processors and consumers it is meant to serve.
Whilst being a fascinating and thought-provoking read for professionals in the Agriculture and Environmental sciences, it will also appeal to students and researchers in agricultural policy, development studies, geography, public administration, rural sociology, and science and technology studies.
This book is published in the STEPS Centre's Pathways to Sustainability series.
This book is the first systematic study of seasonality for over twenty years, and it aims to revive academic interest and policy awareness of this crucial but neglected issue. Thematic chapters explore recent shifts with profound implications for seasonality, including climate change, HIV/AIDS, and social protection. Case study chapters explore seasonal dimensions of livelihoods in Africa (Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi), Asia (Bangladesh, China, India), and Latin America (Peru). Others assess policy responses to adverse seasonality, for example through irrigation, migration and seasonally-sensitive education. The book also includes innovative tools for monitoring seasonality, which should enable more appropriate responses.
Farmer First Revisited: Innovation for Agricultural Research and Development
Ian Scoones and John Thompson
ITDG Publishing (2008), 384 pages
ISBN 1 85339 682 3
Agriculture is an urgent global priority and farmers find themselves in the front line of some of the world's most pressing issues- climate change, globalization and food security. Twenty years ago, the Farmer First workshop held at the Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex, UK, launched a movement to encourage farmer participation in agricultural reasearch and development (R & D), responding to farmers' needs in complex, diverse, risk-prone environments, and promoting sustainable livelihoods and agriculture. Since that time, methodological, institutional and policy experiments have unfolded around the world.
Farmer First Revisited returns to the debates about farmer participation in agricultural R & D and looks to the future. With over 60 contributions from across the world, the book presents a range of experiences that highlight the importance of going beyond a focus on the farm to a wider innovation system, including market interactions as well as the wider institutional and policy environment. If, however, farmers are really to be put first, a politics of demand is required in order to shape the direction of these innovative systems. This is calls for a major rethinking of agricultural R & D, the boosting of the knowledge and capacities of farmers' organizations to innovate, the strenghening of networks and alliances to support, document and share lessons on farmer-led innovation, and the transformation of agricultural higher education.
Beyond Farmer First: Rural People's Knowledge, Agricultural Research and Extension Practice
Edited by Ian Scoones and John Thompson
ISBN 1 85339 250 2
ITDG Publishing (1994), 301 pages. Price: £12.95
This book presented a selection of the papers presented at the workshop “Beyond Farmer First”, which took place at the Institute of Development Studies , Sussex , in October 1992.
Click on the links to view scanned copies of selected sections of the book (by kind permission of Practical Action Publishing).
- Table of contents, pp. iii–viii
- List of workshop participants and contributors to the volume, pp. 273–277
- Ian Scoones and John Thompson, ‘Introduction', pp. 1–12
Part 1: Theoretical reflections on knowledge, power and practice
- Pt 1 Introduction / Ian Scoones and John Thompson, ‘Knowledge, power and agriculture – towards a theoretical understanding', pp. 15–32
Part 2: Methodological innovations, applications and challenges
- Pt 2 Introduction / Andrea Cornwall et al. , ‘Acknowledging process: methodological challenges for agricultural research and extension', pp. 97–117
- Jeffrey W. Bentley, ‘Stimulating peasant farmer experiments in non-chemical pest control in Central America ', pp. 147–150
- Yunita T. Winarto, ‘Encouraging knowledge exchange: integrated pest management in Indonesia ', 150–154
Part 3: Transforming institutions and changing policies
- Pt 3 Introduction / Jules N. Pretty and Robert Chambers, ‘Towards a learning paradigm: new professionalism and institutions for a sustainable agriculture', pp. 181–202
- John Farrington and Anthony J. Bebbington, ‘From research to innovation: getting the most from interaction with NGOs', pp. 203–213
- Anthony J. Bebbington, ‘Farmers' federations and food systems: organizations for enhancing rural livelihoods', pp. 220–224
- Sam Fujisaka, ‘Will farmer participatory research survive in the International Agricultural Research Centres?', pp. 227–235
- Niels Röling, ‘Facilitating sustainable agriculture: turning policy models upside down', pp. 245–248
- Lori-Ann Thrupp and Jorge Uquillas, ‘The “Beyond Farmer First” researcher: A play in two acts', pp. 266–269