Early in April 2016, GFAR, CGIAR and ARC of South Africa co-organized a landmark GCARD3 Global Event that brought together over 500 participants from 83 countries and across 15 different recognized sectors to dialogue on key national, regional and global AR&D issues and to develop collective actions that shape the future of AR&D. As an inclusive and participatory process, the GCARD3 dialogues are continuing through regional consultations to further deepen discussions on priority AR&D issues and come up with outcomes to inform policy processes. Discussions among regional stakeholders will improve understanding of the issues and required actions as well as foster partnerships.
The Africa Regional Consultation will take place from 28th to 29th April 2016 through an online platform coordinated by FARA working in collaboration with GFAR and CGIAR. This will provide an opportunity to discuss and plan for better coordination with existing regional priorities and alignment processes. The consultations will focus on three mutually reinforcing sub-themes that ensure that AR&D contributes to the continent’s agricultural transformation.
The discussions on each sub-theme are guided by a number of questions. Through this note I invite you to be a part of these discussions by joining and making your contribution. Go to the respective thematic pages by clicking on the sub-theme titles. Each sub theme page lists the questions to be answered in the discussion. You are invited to participate in the discussion by posting comments entered in the box provided at the bottom of the page. You are requested to enter your name and email address only once. It is presumed that comments do not reflect the position of your organizations. However, if your contribution reflects the position of your organization kindly indicate this within the comment.
What follows is a brief background on sub-theme 1 to help you engage in the discussions.
Sub-theme 1: African continental policies, frameworks and initiatives
At the beginning of the 21st Century, African political leaders realized that Africa’s agricultural and economic transformation would not be possible without a concerted effort expressed through a continental policy and framework for transforming the continent’s agriculture. In July 2003 African Heads of State and Government (HSG) adopted the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) as the overarching policy and framework for Africa’s agricultural transformation. CAADP aims to achieve a 6% annual growth of agriculture and calls on African governments to allocate a minimum of 10% of their national budgets to agriculture. To achieve this growth, countries are to target investments in four mutually reinforcing areas: Land and water management, infrastructure and market access, food supply and hunger reduction, and agricultural research, technology dissemination and adoption. Each of these pillars incorporates policy, institutional reform and capacity building. For further information on CAADP click here……
The challenges, gains and learning from the experiences of CAADP’s implementation (planning and policy processes) in the first decade (2003 – 2013), made it possible to identify priorities, actions and implementation strategies for CAADP in the second decade and beyond. The 2014 AU Year of Agriculture and Food Security provided a unique opportunity for articulating a shared vision among all stakeholders on the future of Africa’s agriculture. This culminated in the adoption of the June 2014 Malabo Declaration on Agriculture by AU HSG in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea. Build on the earlier CAADP Maputo commitments, the Malabo Declaration gave a renewed legitimacy to CAADP as Africa’s strategic framework for advancing agricultural growth and transformation for shared prosperity. The Malabo Declaration provides the African vision and resolve to accelerated agricultural transformation through collective and Member State specific actions. Among the key issues unique in the Malabo Declaration are: (i) the focus on delivering measurable results and impact around seven areas of commitment, and (ii) the focus on institutional and policy change to create an enabling environment for country and regional efforts to deliver on the Malabo targets and commitments. For more information on the seven commitments of the Malabo Declaration click here.
As a continental policy framework for Africa’s agriculture, CAADP underscores the need for increased agricultural productivity through the application of science, technology and innovation (STI). Through research and development, the contribution of STI to agricultural productivity cannot be overemphasized. In the context of CAADP, a number of continent-wide frameworks have been developed to promote agricultural productivity growth in Africa. These include:
The Framework for African Agricultural Productivity (FAAP), which was endorsed by African HSG in July 2006 in The Gambia as the framework to guide and assist stakeholders in African agricultural research and development to meet the objectives of CAADP Pillar IV and the African growth agenda. Itself a product of extensive consultations among diverse stakeholders at different levels in Africa, the FAAP calls for farmer empowerment by catalizing institutional reforms of research, extension, training and education systems. It also advocates for increasing the scale of Africa’s agricultural productivity investments; and aligning and harmonizing external financial support to agriculture. For more information on the FAAP click here.
The Science Agenda for Agriculture in Africa (S3A) which was endorsed by African HSG in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea in June 2014 as the framework for “connecting science to transform agriculture in Africa”. Developed by FARA in collaboration with the SROs, CGIAR and IFAD, the S3A envisions that “By 2030 Africa ensures its food and nutrition security; becomes a recognized global scientific player in agriculture and food systems and the world’s breadbasket”. As a framework, the S3A articulates the science, technology, extension, innovations, policy and social learning that Africa needs to apply in order to meet its agricultural and overall development goals. For more information on the S3A click here.
The Science, Technology and Innovation Strategy for Africa (STISA) 2024, which was adopted at the 23rd Ordinary Session of AU HSG in June 2014 as part of the long-term people centered AU Agenda 2063. The Mission of STISA-2024 is to “Accelerate Africa’s transition to an innovation-led, knowledge-based economy”. It is underpinned by science, technology and innovation as a multi-functional tool and enabler for achieving continental development goals. As a continent-wide framework, STISA-2024 aims to enhance the effectiveness of science, technology and innovation in addressing priority issues; improve technical competencies and institutional capacity for STI; promote economic competitiveness through innovation; and protect knowledge production by strengthening intellectual property rights and regulatory regimes at all levels. For more information on STISA 2024 click here.
The AfDB African Agricultural Transformation Agenda (AATA) which is a continent-wide strategy that prioritizes a business-driven approach to transforming African agriculture. The AATA aligns with the commitments of the Malabo Declaration and seeks to address four key goals: (i) Eliminating extreme poverty in africa; (ii) ending hunger and malnutrition; (iii) turning Africa into a net food exporter; alnd (iv) moving Africa to the top of the global value chain. An integral component of AATA is the Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT), a collaborative plan for CG Center and FARA support of the AATA. The TAAT provides a critical linkage between CGIAR and FARA research capacity, and the proven technologies they generate, and the AfDB’s AATA. TAAT provides a wide range of tested approaches to increased agricultural productivity and technology delivery nested in eight priority value chains and supported by a capacity development cross-cutting theme. For more information on AATA and TAAT click here.
Join us for a discussion of the four questions for this sub-theme which will include: