Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Value chain based research funding

11 March 2013. Dakar. An innovative approach to funding ARD is the value chain based research funding. Some structures arise that offer funding opportunities for extension, support and advice and research. Examples are FIRCA in Côte d'Ivoire, FNRAA in Senegal, FONRID in Burkina Faso and AFAN in Nigeria. (see p.22: Analysis of mechanisms for the dissemination of improved agricultural technologies and innovations within ECOWAS)

Some countries have managed to put in place structures for platforms to encourage operational use of research results by producers and took a serious option for solving the problem of financing the system.
  1. In Côte d'Ivoire FIRCA allows endogenous financing of agricultural research by private contributions through various channels. 
  2. In Senegal the Fonds National de Recherches Agricoles et Agro-alimentaires (FNRAA) offers competitive funds for research addressing the real needs of producers. With PAEPARD support, the CSA has commissioned IPAR and CNCR a study on FNRAA. FNRAA is a mechanism for funding public agricultural research since it involves innovative farmer organizations directly via the NCRC in its decision-making and evaluation. For one, it allows research orientation to the demands made by the producers.
  3. In Burkina Faso, significant public funds have been contracted with the World Bank for the benefit of agricultural research though a new structure: the National Fund for Research and Innovation for Development (FONRID).
During a PAEPARD workshop in Dakar, two examples were presented.
  1. In Ivory Coast 18 value chains work with the Fond Interprofessionnelle de la Recherche et du Conseil Agricole  (FIRCA) and 13 to 14 are collecting fees. The value chain actors identify the projects which FIRCA finances. The projects are applied research, agricultural advice, technical training and the reinforcement of capacities.
  2. In Burkina Faso, the Ministry of Research Science and Innovation created in January 2011 the National Fund for Research and Innovation for Development (FONRID). In order to assert its sovereignty in the field of scientific research and innovation, the Burkina government has taken the following options: (a) orientation of research towards demand and national priorities; (b) improving the quality of scientific research; (c) the promotion of invention and innovation; (d) diversification of the scientific, technical and financial partnership.
Following are two interviews on these ARD (Agricultural Research for Development) national funding mechanisms:
  1. Interview with Adolphe Ouya, Interprofessional Fund for Research and Agricultural Council (FIRCA) - Cote d'Ivoire.
  2. Interview with Denis Depommier, CIRAD Regional Director for West Africa 
Interview with Adolphe OUYA of FIRCA, Ivory Coast
Fond Interprofessionnelle de la Recherche et du Conseil Agricole  (FIRCA- Cote d’Ivoire
Atelier multi-acteurs PAEPARD/ColeACP - La valorisation non alimentaire des dérivés de la mangue en Afrique de l’Ouest. Dakar 11- 14 March 2013.

Transcript of the interview (original in French) 
How is the research theme of the value chain actors selected by FIRCA?
Our research themes are of course identified through workshops with the value chain actors, not only the producers. We than identify projects which we will conduct over a period of three years. In the FIRCA action plan we evaluate every year the projects.
How can the value chain finance agricultural research?
FIRCA in Ivory Coast - for instance -  negotiates with the mango value chain actors the fees which will be levied on the value chain. After consultation we agree on a fee of 2,5 CFA per kg of exported mango. With this levee we constitute the fund for research, technical training, the reinforcement of capacities, and agricultural advice. Of course those projects are identified through consultation between FIRCA and the value chain actors. The value chain actors identify the projects which FIRCA finances. The projects are applied research,  agricultural advice, technical training and the reinforcement of capacities. FIRCA is conducting an update every three months and it is thus the value chain with its own resources which finances its projects, of course with the support of the state of Ivory Coast.
How many value chain went through this approach?
18 value chains work with FIRCA and 13 to 14 are collecting fees: hevea , palm oil, coffee, cacao, the pigs value chain,  filiere avicole, filiere fruit-agrume, and several other value chains have integrated this scheme to finance research.
Can a research on the use of mango residues be funded through FIRCA?
Yes of course because it is a concern and a need of the value chain actors, as well in Ivory Coast, as in Burkina Faso, as in Senegal. We have the same problems in our mango value chain. And if we select a specific theme, it is obvious it is also an issue for Ivory Coast.
In Ivory Coast we will already study how we can start the project taking into account the available funding. What would be interesting is to also have a donor who is willing to invest and collaborate to get the project into operation.
Why is the origin of the Value chain based research funding?
In Ivory Coast we came to realise that several project got financed and often the results were deceiving. Sometimes it was because the same project were financed: either by donors or by the State. We thus needed to federate all this energy in a central structure.
Is this not the ideal scenario to finance users led research ?
I indeed think this would be ideal. Because you know best what are your needs. You orient research towards your interest. I don’t say that donors impose their will but you have the leverage to go in the  direction you want. It is therefore important African governments mobilize their resources and then ask for a complement from donors who are willing to accompany them for the fulfillment of a project.

Interview with Denis Depommier, CIRAD Regional Director West Africa
Interviewed during the Multi-stakeholder workshop PAEPARD / COLEACP - Valuing non-food derived from mango West Africa. Dakar from 11 to 14 March 2013.

Denis Depommier reponds to the following questions:
  1. What funds could be used for research on non-food valorisation of mango? 
  2. What is the collaboration with CIRAD FIRCA? 
  3. What is the base complementary Australian CORAF?

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