Press release (in French) with details of the event “Making Agricultural Investment Work for Africa: A parliamentarian response to the land rush“, August 2014.
Press release with details of the event “Making Agricultural Investment Work for Africa: A parliamentarian response to the land rush“, August 2014.
Speech by Hon. Mohamed Elmi, Minister of State for Development of Northern Kenya and Other Arid Lands, on 13 February 2013 at the Nairobi launch of the book Pastoralism and Development in Africa: Dynamic Change at the Margins.
The Future Agricultures Consortium is inviting journalists and media specialists to enter a competition for writing on the politics and processes that influence agricultural investment in Africa.
The entry deadline is 8 February 2013 and the winners will be supported to attend FAC’s major conference on the Political economy of agricultural policy in Africa, which takes place in South Africa in March 2013.
Case for support for the project on Rising Powers in African agriculture.
A note from Ian Scoones, Professorial Fellow, Institute of Development Studies and co-convenor of the Future Agricultures Consortium (www.future-agricultures.org) for the DFID White Paper team and the UK Parliamentary Inquiry into the Global Food Crisis.
30 April 2008
International Conference: Towards a Green Revolution for Africa
Kofi Annan has called for a “uniquely African Green Revolution” founded on “bold pro-poor policies” to address the food crisis facing Africa and the world.
As food prices escalate at an unprecedented rate and shortages worsen, the Former Secretary General of the United Nations and Chairman of the Board of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) has called for a new approach to finding equitable solutions.
30 September 2009
Smallholder agriculture was at the centre of a recent online discussion by the IDS-hostedFuture Agricultures Consortium where researchers debated farm scale and the food crisis in light of recent editorials and news stories about land grabs, food prices and the future of smallholder agriculture. The importance of small farming was underscored by a call for rural investment and context-sensitive policy making.
African smallholders say that enhancing farmer voice in strategic R&D processes and investing in innovations to improve market access, soil fertility management, small-scale irrigation and water management, and access to ICTs and credit should have more emphasis in agricultural research for development (AR4D) reform agenda promoted by GCARD. In three national workshops with representatives of nearly 100 smallholder organisations, the Future Agricultures Consortium shows how decisions made in Montpellier in March 2010 can be stronger with true farmer inclusion.
This twelve-month outreach plan aims to identify/distil key lessons and messages from FAC’s published and ongoing research and use communication channels or “pathways” to target specific agriculture policy stakeholders with these lessons and messages. The timing of outreach activities should coincide with agriculture policy windows (e.g. key conferences, when parliaments are in session, budget deliberations, government consultations on policy, media events, etc.).
By Blessings Chinsinga
February 2007 This case study argues that political context matters in agricultural development issues. No matter what the technical or economic arguments for or against particular policy positions are, it is ultimately the configuration of political interests that influence agricultural policy outcomes on the ground.
- Soils and Fertilizers – December 2005
- Will Formalising Property Rights Reduce Poverty? – January 2006
- Millennium Villages – the solution to African poverty? – June 2006
- Aid modalities to agriculture – the end of the SWAp? – November 2006
- Growth linkages in agriculture: single blueprint or multiple trajectories? – Dec. 2006
- Seasonality: four seasons, four solutions? – April 2007
- Low External Input and Sustainable Agriculture: Beyond the Hype? – November 2007
- Can Ethiopia Realise a Better Agriculture in its ‘Third Millennium’? The Role and Dilemma of Farm Prices – October 2007
- An African Green Revolution? Some personal reflections – October 2007
- Global Assessments and the Politics of Knowledge: Lessons from the International Assessment of Agricultural Science and Technology – April 2008
Agricultural input subsidies were a common element in agricultural development in poor rural economies in the 1960s and 70s, including successful green revolutions. Although subsidies have continued, to a greater and lesser extent, in some countries, conventional wisdom as well as dominant donor thinking in the 80s and 90s was that subsidies had been ineffective and inefficient policy instruments in Africa, which contributed to government overspending and fiscal and macroeconomic problems.
Presenter: Nik Gowing
Guests: Dr Makanjuola Olaseinde Arigbede; Andrew Bennett; Kevin Cleaver; Crawford Falconer; Professor LouiseFresco; Anthony Gooch; Duncan Green; Simeon Greene; The Honourable Kate Kainja Kaluluma; Paul Nicholson;Esther Penunia; Professor Norah Olembo; Peter Robbins; Dr. Pedro Sanchez
NIK GOWING: in the rich countries and the poorer countries, in the developed world and the developing world, in the north and the south smallholder farmers are leaving the land. Our food is increasingly being produced by big business. As long as there is food for you and me to buy does it matter? A growing body of expert opinions says yes it does.Studies show that in poorer countries the tens of millions of small farms are a win win for economic growth and poverty reduction. They are more efficient than large farms. They keep large numbers of people in paid productive work and they ensure secure supplies of food. So if small farms are so important why is their very existence under threat? Why should we care about failing the farmer?
Well we’ve brought together an international panel of farmers’ representatives, from government, from tradebodies, scientists, business, non governmental organisations and donor agencies to discuss whether we are failing the farmer. Let’s hear from three smallholder farmers for whom farming is their way of life that’s under threat. Paul Nicholson, you’re a farmer from the Basque region in Northern Spain, you speak for the international peasant movement which is La Via Campesina. Why should we be caring about the small farmer? Small farmers produce the majority of all the food we consume wherever we are in this world.
Early in the new century a consensus on agricultural and rural development emerged that provided renewed impetus to efforts to boost both agricultural development and the rural non-farm economy, in a context of ever closer rural-urban linkages and globalisation. Both governments and donors have committed themselves to support this.
The challenge has been to translate themes into practical policy. For two years the Future Agricultures Consortium, supported by DFID, has been investigating how to do this, primarily in Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi.
This set of meetings presents of the results of this work. It also includes the World Bank presenting the 2008 World Development Report on Agriculture and Development, and two sessions on the way forward and whether or not emerging challenges from biofuels, climate change, and the growth of China and India imply that the agenda needs radical revision.
By Ian Scoones and John Thompson
12 February 2009
“to encourage dialogue and the sharing of good practice by policy makers and opinion formers in Africa on the role of agriculture in broad based growth”. But aren’t others doing this? CAADP (with the legitimacy of an international governmental process) and AGRA, IFPRI and others (with lots of money)…..likely to be others, So where do we fit?, What do we do that is different?
The overall context is the alarming decline in the growth of farm output in Kenya over the last fifteen or more years. As Figure 1 shows, from the late 1980s the growth of agricultural production has stagnated and fallen behind population growth. Production per head of population is now slightly below what it was at Independence in 1964.
The modern Kenyan economy has been built on agriculture, starting with the development oflarge-scale commercial farms owned by white settlers in the first half of the C20. Followingthe Swynnerton Plan of 1954, a drive to develop the smaller holdings operated by Africanfarmers began. For almost thirty years thereafter, before and after Independence in 1964,smallholder development in the higher potential parts of Kenya was successfulto drive agricultural growth ahead of the country’s rapid population expansion. Smallholdersincreased notably their output of coffee, tea, pyrethrum, and cotton for export and producedlarge amounts of maize, beans, sugar, beef, and dairy for the domestic market.
By Amdissa Teshome
A number of observers have described the policy making process in Ethiopia as strongly influenced by a long history of centralised, hierarchical systems of control under Imperial rule and nearly two decades of military rule by the Derg. The present government has made efforts to reverse this legacy however.