John Libbey Eurotext

Science et changements planétaires / Sécheresse

Involving women in research for economic growth through agricultural technologies and practices: ICRISAT's initiatives in sub-Saharan Africa Volume 24, issue 4, Octobre-Novembre-Décembre 2013

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1 The HOPE seeks to help smallholder farmers increase the yields of the two dryland cereal crops, sorghum and millet, in West Africa (Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, and Nigeria), Eastern Africa (Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania) and India (Rajasthan, Haryana, Gujarat, and Maharashtra).The poor in these target areas are among the most food-insecure in the world, unable to earn adequate incomes from agriculture. Lack of adaptive approaches to increasing their productivity combined with shrinking markets have spelt doom for dryland farmers, most of who are still in subsistence farming. The vicious circle of less production and less market demand has led to poor investment and support to dryland agriculture. ICRISAT, working with a wide array of partners, is addressing this decline by stimulating research on sorghum and millet farming, enhancing technology utilization, linking farmers with markets, and strengthening the capacity of national and civil society partners along an inclusive market-oriented development pathway.

2 Tropical Legumes-II is a joint initiative of three international agricultural research centres, viz. ICRISAT (chickpea, groundnut and pigeonpea), Internationa Institute of Tropical Agriculture ([IITA] cowpea & soybean), and International Center for Tropical Agriculture ([CIAT], common bean) that aims to increase productivity and production of legumes and the income of poor farmers in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and South Asia (SA) by 15%, with improved varieties occupying 30% of the total area planted by some 57 million poor farmers in the coming 10 years. It is expected that this will result in an additional value gain of more than US$ 300 million during that period. The project's strategy is to fast track testing and adoption of existing varieties and advanced breeding lines for use by famers; generate new farmer- and market-preferred varieties and hybrids with desirable traits (high yields, tolerance to moisture stress, and resistance to pests and diseases); and establish decentralized, pro-poor seed production and delivery systems.

3 Republic of Niger, Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock. Directory on the Availability of Improved Seed. 2010-2011.