Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Monday, May 16, 2011

PAEPARD AFRICA Multi-Stakeholders Consultation (AMSC)

12th-13th May 2011, NAIROBI (HILL PARK HOTEL). A PAEPARD AFRICA Multi-Stakeholders Consultation (AMSC) was organised by the WP II leader and co-leader (PAFFO- EAFF) and FANRPAN.

The main objectives was to synthesize and harmonize the process out of the sub-regional MSC exchanges to develop a common perspective for the African stakeholders. In order to explore the possibilities of having common federating themes within the fast track and slow track processes inclusive of balanced ARD partnership. This workshop came in the back drop of the European MSC which has also interrogated various partnerships.

The main questions during the MSC were:
  1. How should non-research (farmer’s organizations, private sector and NGOs) lead or influence the orientation of ARD towards a more balanced but demand driven approach whilst incorporating partners in research and ensuring engaged participation of the African family farmers?
  2. How do we shift the thinking and approach of research by researchers and development partners to be more results oriented in as far as addressing real challenges faced by African farmers
  3. How to establish, manage and sustain inclusive and balanced partnerships in ARD?
  4. What are the most promising opportunities federating and common themes suggested by the MSC consultations and around which ARD collaboration of research and non-research stakeholders from Africa and Europe could be envisaged?
  5. What are the needs of each stakeholder category in order to establish inclusive and balanced partnerships in ARD and what role can PAEPARD play to support establishment of such partnerships?
  6. How could non-research partners strategize in advocating form increased and sustainable (from within and outside Africa) funding for ARD that benefit the majority of African farmers
  7. How to strengthen the analytical capacity of non-research partners in Africa to enable them analyze research policies and programmes with the intent of providing informed and balanced inputs into ARD in Africa
The specific objectives of the AMSC were: Based on internal and IMSC consultations, related case studies and experiences of participants:
  • review the roles that non-research stakeholders can play and how this can be articulated with the roles of research stakeholders
  • review what drives the conceptualization of themes for funding by donors
  • review exploring change in mindset by research stakeholders towards more participatory and practical demand based research
  • review elements of success/failure of inclusive and balanced partnerships
  • define appropriate ways of establishing ARD partnerships between research and non research stakeholders in Africa
  • define appropriate ways of establishing ARD partnerships in the two continents and define/devise a communication strategy that will strengthen sharing of information partnerships
  • define the capacities that need to be developed and strengthened collectively (joint learning, “social learning”) and individually for each stakeholder category
  • define common expectations for the PAEPARD project (in terms of capacity strengthening, advocacy, information etc)
  • define different but complimentary roles to be played by each partner
The following federating themes were identified during the internal consultations:

Eastern Africa (EAFF)
-          Federating themes
o   Food security
o   Knowledge  management
o   Institutional development and sustainability
-          Lessons learnt
o   Implementation was challenging in the early stages
o   There is need for an efforts towards harmonization
o   It is critical to understand each others’ needs and challenges
o   Partnership development creates improved innovation and entrepreneurship
o   Partnership development enables nurturing of shared vision
o   Holistic value chain approach is key
o   Effective information dissemination and training is important

West Africa (ROPPA)
-          Federating theme
o   Food security
o   Strategic value  chains  as identified by ECOWAS and ROPPA
o   Support to small scale farmers
-          Lessons learnt
o   Partnership mechanisms should be strengthened as to allow FO and/or other non-research partners to be the real drivers of the consultation process
o   There is need to provide funding in support of the consultation mechanisms
o   Capacity building of FO and other non-research stakeholders is important   to enable them generate research themes/ideas
o   Capacities of stakeholders to link their processes to national and sub-regional policies need to be strengthened
o   There is a risk that FO are just used to validate proposal without their real involvement

Southern Africa (FANRPAN)
-          Federating themes
o   Post harvest technologies
o   Animal husbandry
o   Access to markets
o   Water management
o   Environmental resilience
o   Policy development
o   Knowledge management

Central Africa (PROPAC)
-          Federating themes
o   Food security
o   Post-harvest losses
o   Innovations and knowledge management
o   Management of indigenous knowledge and innovations
o   Funding of research
-          Lessons learnt
o   Capacity and institutional capacity building of non-research stakeholders should be considered as key for the success of partnership
o   PAEPARD activities should be aligned to national and sub-regional policies
o   Capitalize and promote good practices
o   It is critical to undertake an aggressive advocacy towards the AU and African States for ARD funding
o   It is important to seek for funds for implementation of the project proposals selected during the first call.
Research themes could be clustered around 4 major areas:
-          Value chain,
-          Water management,
-          Agricultural policies, and
-          Macro-economic issues

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