Stories of Change - Agricultural Innovation

02.12.2018

The Story of Change Book of the CDAIS project is available since 29 November. Discover 24 stories about Agricultural Innovation from this project in eight countries, captured during 2017 and 2018: Angola,Burkina Faso, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Honduras, Laos and Rwanda.

Building Competence and Confidence in Agricultural Innovation*

Improving rural livelihoods through agricultural innovation has made recent advances, for example through the introduction of new technologies, the development of novel seed varieties, and through a broader availability of micro-financing. Yet progress is still limited. It seems that irrespective of which new technologies are made available, farmers do not always adopt them. Why? One hypothesis is that ‘soft skills’, those that are necessary for the process of change, could be improved. Such skills include the capacity for collaboration with others, negotiation expertise, and the capacity for influential engagement in political processes. 

A turning point on international commitment to strengthen rural livelihoods occurred at the 2011 meeting of Ministers of Agriculture from the G20 countries. The Tropical Agriculture Platform (TAP)** was then established to address these and other issues. In 2015, the Capacity Development for Agricultural Innovations Systems (CDAIS)*** was founded and participants from eight countries in Africa, Asia and Central America, along with their global partners, took on the challenging task of putting a new approach into practice. These countries are: Angola, Burkina Faso, Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Honduras, Laos and Rwanda. Towards this end, CDAIS supported a global consultation through the TAP Global Taskforce. The Taskforce developed a common methodology called ‘the framework on capacity development for agricultural innovation systems’. 

The eight CDAIS pilot countries, in turn, use this conceptual framework to guide their activities. Farmers and many others involved in the  32 innovation partnerships across the eight countries  have shared their views in this book, three years from the start.  They ‘speak’ about the changes, but  also of the challenges, and as such, they offer signals, road signs, and indications of which are the best directions to take from here.  

The book can be downloaded here 

*This publication was produced with the financial support of the European Union. Its contents are the sole responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.

** In response to this capacity gap, the G20 Agriculture Ministers in their meeting in June 2011, had requested the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) to take the lead in developing the Tropical Agriculture Platform (TAP), along with the G20 countries and institutional partners. TAP partners in 2015 developed a methodology called ‘The Common Framework on Capacity Development  for Agricultural Innovation Systems’. 

***CDAIS, or Capacity Development for Agricultural Innovation Systems, funded by the  European Commission and implemented by Agrinatura, a consortium of European universities and research institutes, in partnership with FAO and national partners.