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Guidelines for Innovation Platforms in Agricultural Research for Development

Innovation Platforms are fast becoming part of the mantra of agricultural research for development projects and programmes. Their basic tenet is that stakeholders depend on one another to achieve agricultural development outcomes, and hence need a space where they can learn, negotiate, and coordinate to overcome challenges and capture opportunities through a facilitated innovation process. This important publication provides a critical analysis of Innovation Platforms, their defining features, key functions, and what they can and – as importantly – cannot do.

The Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index

The Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index (WEAI), a groundbreaking tool to measure the empowerment, agency and inclusion of women in the agriculture sector, has celebrated its second anniversary. The WEAI measures the empowerment, agency, and inclusion of women in the agriculture sector in an effort to identify ways to overcome those obstacles and constraints.

Evaluation Review 1: Design, monitoring, and evaluation in a changing climate: lessons learned from agriculture and food security programme evaluations in Asia

Authors: Bours, D. et alii.
Publication date: 2014

This paper is the first in a series of SEA Change / UKCIP Evaluation Reviews, which are intended as short briefs highlighting and distilling findings from published evaluations of climate change related programme interventions. This first paper is aimed at sharing some design, monitoring, and evaluation ‘lessons learned’ that are pertinent to climate change adaptation, which have been drawn from a small selection of agriculture/food security programmes across Asia.

Monitoring and analysing food and agricultural policies in Africa: Synthesis report 2013

Authors: Angelucci F., Balie J., Gourichon H., Mas Aparisi A. & Witwer M. (for FAO)
Publication date: 2013

The synthesis report by FAO’s Monitoring African Food and Agricultural Policies (MAFAP) team, is the first ever attempt to systematically analyze agriculture and food security policies in several African countries, using common methodology over years.

Impact-evaluation guidelines: Designing impact evaluations for agricultural projects

Authors: Winters, P., Salazar, L. & Maffioli, A. (for IDB)
Publication date: 2010

The purpose of this guideline is to provide suggestions on designing impact evaluations for agricultural projects, particularly projects that directly target farmers, and seek to improve agricultural production, productivity and profitability. Specific issues in evaluating agricultural projects are addressed, including the need to use production-based indicators and to carefully consider indirect or spillover effects that are common in agricultural projects.

Guide to evaluating rural extension

Authors: Christoplos, I., Sandison, P. & Chipeta, S. (for GFRAS)
Publication date: 2012

The purpose of this guide is to support those involved in extension evaluation to choose how to conduct more comprehensive, rigorous, credible and useful evaluations. The Guide supports readers to understand different types of evaluation, to make decisions on what is most appropriate for their circumstances, and to access further sources of theoretical and practical information.

The World Bank Toolkit: Gender issues in monitoring and evaluation in agriculture

Author: The World Bank
Publication date: 2012

This toolkit has been developed to assist project task teams, borrowers, and partners to recognize and address gender concerns in designing rural development projects and to monitor and evaluate results, outcomes, and impact on achieving overall rural well-being. To further this, the Agriculture Action Plan 2013–2015 aims to include gender-related analysis in 100% of its projects and gender-related actions and M&E in 75% of its projects.

Should Foreign Aid Fund Agricultural Training? Evidence from Armenia

Authors: Blair, R. et alii. (for Mathematica Policy Research)
Publication date: 2013

Many foreign aid agencies fund large-scale agricultural training for farmers in developing countries, but little rigorous research has been conducted on whether these programs are effective. This report presents the findings of a clustered randomized controlled trial to estimate the effectiveness of a U.S. government-funded farmer training program that trained more than 50,000 farmers throughout Armenia.

Effectiveness of innovation grants to smallholder agricultural producers: an explorative systematic review

Authors: Ton, G. et alii.
Publication date: 2013 

In this systematic review, the authors investigate whether innovation grants to smallholders are effective in facilitating agricultural innovation. Their findings are based on a systematic search in electronic data-bases to capture studies from different disciplines and geographical areas. All studies present evidence of the positive changes due to these investments in agricultural innovation. Some of the impact studies show mixed impacts on natural resources.

Assessing the effectiveness of multistakeholder platforms. Agricultural and Rural Management councils in the Democratic Republic of the Congo

Author(s): Thaddée Badibanga, Catherine Ragasa & John Ulimwengu (for IFPRI)
Publication date: 2013

In 2008, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) established multistakeholder platforms in the agricultural sector known as agricultural and rural management councils (CARGs). The aim of CARGs is achieving a decentralized governance of the agricultural policies and strategies through a large participation of stakeholders of the sector in the design and implementation of agricultural policy processes. Multistakeholder platforms are institutional arrangements intended and used for learning, policy dialogue, and priority setting, but they are rarely evaluated. This paper analyzes the effectiveness of local-level (territory) multistakeholder platforms using data from 55 CARGs in 23 randomly selected territories in three provinces (Bandundu, Bas-Congo, and Kinshasa) of the DRC. The first CARG was established in 2008, and the survey was conducted three years later, from August to October 2011.