Technology and Innovation Report 2010

Enhancing Food Security in Africa through Science, Technology and Innovation

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The 2010 Technology and Innovation Report - Enhancing Food Security in Africa Through Science, Technology and Innovation - focuses on the challenges of improving agricultural performance in Africa and the role of technology and innovation in raising agricultural production and incomes of all farmers, including smallholder farms. The report argues that the main challenge is to strengthen the innovation capabilities of African agricultural systems as a means of addressing poverty, improving food security and achieving broader economic growth and development.

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Building innovation capabilities in african agriculture

This chapter attempts to apply innovation systems framework to African agriculture as a potentially useful tool for identifying weaknesses in the agricultural production and innovation system of a country. Such a ‘gap analysis’ is a necessary step in developing policy actions to support agricultural development, both for the short term and the long term. The components of an agricultural innovation system (as illustrated in Figure 14) include the actors, institutions, organizations and policies that together support innovation in agriculture, along with the infrastructure and financing mechanisms that enable it. The characteristics of these innovation systems may vary significantly between (and even within) countries, which make country-specific analysis necessary, but there remain some common issues that affect many African countries to a greater or lesser extent

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