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2017-02-13 | News

Bridging the research policy gap on food security in sub-Saharan Africa

Moses Ikiara encouraged researchers to include policy-makers in the research process as a way to ensure topical and operational relevance for public policy.

Better farming practices could boost food production among small holder farmers. Many African governments invest in agriculture as a key mean to grow the economy and reduce poverty, but many of these investments or policies have not sufficiently incorporated research findings even when those are available.

Therefore a group of 30 agricultural researchers from Sub Saharan Africa met for three days in Nairobi to learn and to discuss how knowledge exchange between researchers and policy makers can be improved.  Presentations were mixed with practical assignments on different approaches for mapping the policy context and distilling key messages.

"There is definitively a demand for credible researchers with robust findings. But researchers need to be willing to share their knowledge", said EfD senior research fellow Dr. Moses Ikiara, in an inspiring presentation. He is the former executive director of Kenyan Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis (KIPPRA) and now head of Kenya’s Investment Authority.

The workshop was organized by the AgriFoSe 2030  programme and implemented by Anders Ekbom, Olof Drakenberg, Madelene Ostwald and Daniel Slunge from the Centre for Environment and Sustainability, GMV at the University of Gothenburg/Chalmers.

"It has been very useful for me. I will bring these tools and approaches back to my department and discuss how we can take this further ", says Simon Shomkegh, senior lecturer at the University of Agriculture Makurdi, Nigeria. 

The three day workshop was the first part of an intensive week of meetings that ended with a two day dialogue between researchers and policy makers.

By: Olof Drakenberg