Report: Africa-EU Research Collaboration on Food Security
"Bi-regional science, technology and innovation cooperation in food and nutrition security has contributed to capacity development and joint learning," says the report’s lead author, Judith Ann Francis, who is senior programme coordinator, science and technology policy, at the Technical Centre for Rural and Agricultural Cooperation (CTA).
"Yet this is insufficient if the outputs of the collaboration have not contributed to improving the lives and livelihoods of farmers and other actors involved in the agricultural sector.
"So research alone is not enough, and this is a vital lesson learned from this analysis. We must be able to better track the outputs and impact, or frame the conditions for future collaboration in such a way that the researchers as well as governments, the private sector, including farmers, and the wider society benefit in a tangible way."
Says Francis: "Our analysis also highlights that there is a need to jointly prioritise the research areas for future STI cooperation on food and nutrition security, and to better track the implementation as well as the outputs, outcomes and impact of the investments made."
Who Should Use This Research
The key targeted users of this research are African and European policymakers and members of the scientific and academic community, says Francis.
“The policymakers are expected to ask critical questions about priorities for joint research which are funded through the public purse and how to make sure that those investments lead to significant change not only in the quality of the science but the use to which the outputs are put in support of socio-economic development.
The scientists and researchers are expected to work more closely with governments and the private sector such that their research has policy and societal relevance as well as capacity to deliver social and economic impact to as great an extent as is possible."
Research findings are profoundly forward-looking, Francis argues. “Our assessment of the status of the STI collaboration and the resultant impact of such collaboration over the past years, provides a sound knowledge base for charting the course of future collaboration that delivers more targeted and measurable outcomes and impact."
“Given the long history of science, technology and innovation collaboration between Africa and Europe, the two continents really need to leverage this collaboration, now, to address the global food and nutrition security crisis.”
Africa-EU Research Collaboration on Food Security: A Critical Analysis of the Scope, Coordination and Uptake of Findings, is to be launched in Accra, Ghana, at the High-Level Dialogue of African Ministers and Legislators on Mobilising STI for Africa's Sustainable Development Post-2015 (7-8 July 2015). To contact the author of the report write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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