Development organizations rely on a number of different strategies to facilitate farmers’ awareness of, access to and ultimately adoption of improved production and marketing practices; to promote inclusivity; and to ensure program sustainability. The study revealed definitive trends in their approaches and methodologies. Most of the interviewed organizations (1) establish farmer field schools and demonstration plots, (2) build capacity of lead farmers and rely on them to foster continued knowledge exchanges, and (3) provide farmers with credit mechanisms and increase their access to markets, particularly through the use of Information Communication Technologies (ICTs). Another strong trend suggests that development organizations strive to ensure program sustainability by engaging the private-for-profit sector and building local capacities. Finally, our findings suggest that organizations attempt to mainstream gender issues, include participatory planning in project design, and pursue participatory monitoring and evaluation strategies throughout the project cycle, though implementing participatory approaches can be a challenge. During the interviews the organizations shared some particularly successful approaches and strategies that have helped them in pursuing their objectives, but also discussed implementation challenges.
This guide aims to provide a range of traditional and innovative technologies that make a positive contribution to strengthening food security in Melanesia in response to climate change. It aims to encourage rural farmers in Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands and Vanuatu to think about, and start to prepare for, the impacts of climate change in their communities. It is written for farmers and field or extension workers, teachers and others who work with farmers.
Rural Advisory Services (RAS) could considerably contribute to breaking the vicious cycle of disability and poverty - if RAS would take more consciously into account the needs and the potentials of persons who are affected by disability.
The paper describes the challenge and provides some core facts and figures on disability. It also summarizes the framework for change.
Some elements are suggested on how RAS could boost their contributions to the reduction of hunger and poverty applying a disability-inclusive rural development approach.
This guide introduces 25 questions to help lead programme designers and managers of agricultural value chain projects to success. It aims to complement existing value chain development tools that focus less on bringing together technical and social dimensions. The questions focus on problems and complications that often occur during the different phases of value chain selection and analysis, and design and implementation of related projects.
An overview of tools, guides and other products that the SAI platform has published.
Procedures for Assessing, Transforming, and Evaluating Extension Systems
The purpose of this book is to provide information on how to transform and strengthen pluralistic agricultural extension and advisory systems in moving toward the broader goal of increasing farm income and improving rural livelihoods. The focus of this book is primarily on the technical knowledge, management skills, and information services that small-scale farm households will need to improve their livelihoods in the rapidly changing global economy. In addition, the book will also include information on how extension should help all types of farmers in dealing with escalating natural resource problems, including climate change. The primary focus of this book will be a comparative analysis of different extension strategies, organizational models, institutional innovations, and resource constraints and how an extension system might be transformed and strengthened through specific policy and organizational changes as well as needed investments.
The reform of agricultural extension is on the agenda in many countries and there is a growing convergence among many actors and agencies on key principles that should underpin the process of change. But reform needs to be firmly grounded in a sound analysis of issues relevant to a particular context. This guide provides a framework of such issues as a basis for monitoring, evaluation and analytical discussions to improve support to agricultural extension. It will provide a useful tool for donors, national and local actors involved in planning and organization of extension services seeking to accomplish:
Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) are integral tools for managing and assessing the efficiency and effectiveness of investments in agricultural research and extension (ARE) systems. However, monitoring and evaluation of ARE project performance, outcomes, and impact has been a significant challenge. Moreover, the increased focus of donors and borrowers on impact has resulted in a high demand for expertise in M&E.
The objective of this Good Practice Note is to assist Task Teams of the World Bank and their colleagues in the client countries develop and implement effective M&E systems for ARE projects and programs. The chapters in this Note provide a step-by-step guide for achieving that objective, with emphasis on the World Bank M&E requirements and the specific nature of ARE projects.
Globally, ministries of agriculture, universities, and the private sector employ more than 600,000 extension agents (Swanson, Farmer, and Bahal 1990). In the past, extension services, largely public, were equated with the transfer of agricultural production technology in pre-determined “packages”. Extension systems are now understood to be much broader and more diverse, including public and private sector and civil society institutions that provide a broad range of services (advisory, technology transfer, training, promotional, and information) on a wide variety of subjects (agriculture, marketing, social organization, health and education) needed by rural people to better manage their agricultural systems and livelihoods. This module seeks to summarize principles and good practice for investments in building effective and sustainable extension systems.
Extension reform is in flux, but moving from innovation to execution. Like other historically considered public goods, it is increasingly being decentralized and privatized in different approaches and to different degrees. The immediate challenge facing governments is to reform extension in ways that increase clientoriented services, and at the same time respond to continually changing social goals and economic pressures. Reforms are moving extension in the direction of institutionally pluralistic rural knowledge and innovation networks, but in most cases are not conceived with a clear understanding of the broader implications of such a system.
The compilation highlights the fact that the emerging view of extension is no longer simply that of a unified service, but of a network of knowledge and information support for rural people. One of the propositions put forward throughout the compilation is that extension needs to be viewed within a wider rural development agenda; and that the increasingly complex market, social, and environmental demands on rural production systems requires a more sophisticated and differentiated set of services. From the policy standpoint, this implies that governments need to act in defining and implementing a coherent extension policy for a pluralistic system.
Against a backdrop of changing public policies and other pressures forcing fundamental change in public extension services, the World Bank, USAID, and the Neuchatel Group convened a workshop1 of extension experts to review recent approaches to reform of extension services2 (World Bank 2003). The objective of the workshop was to provide donors, practitioners, and policymakers an opportunity to discuss and identify commonalities in their approaches to agricultural extension. Sessions were organized around issues of institutional pluralism, new funding sources and mechanisms, new extension challenges, and the public sector role in supporting pro-poor extension services.
A Framework for Designing and Analyzing Pluralistic Agricultural Advisory Services
Agricultural advisory services play an important role in supporting the use of the agricultural sector as an engine of pro-poor growth and enabling small farmers to meet new challenges, such as accessing export markets, adopting environmentally sustainable production techniques, and coping with HIV/AIDS and other health challenges that affect agriculture. After years of neglect, there is now renewed interest in agricultural advisory services in many countries. ...
A 4-page brief that describes Prolinnova partners' experience in facilitating farmer-led joint research as an approach to agricultural development, and draws lessons for policy in research, extension and education.