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Stakeholder Meeting Comments

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[click here for full report of results of the stakeholder consultations and survey]


 “I believe the most urgent action is to develop the seed and agricultural extension systems (through public, civil society and/or private sector approaches) that will effectively deliver technologies to women farmers.” - Leader of an international NGO in Africa


“[We need to] create clear criteria for prioritization based on ex-ante assessment of potential benefits to the poor, then apply those criteria to prioritize ruthlessly, concentrating funding and efforts on a smaller number of important projects, resourced to succeed.”  - Donor representative


“[Developing opportunities for families requires] work on all levels at the same time - policy, research, capacity building, education, training, extension, etc. Listen to advice from local stakeholder groups and involve local stakeholder groups from the beginning. Develop generic methods and tools that can work across crop systems.” - Survey respondent


 “I have scored several of these [suggested gender strategies] lower, not so much because they are bad ideas, but because they can become camouflage for covering gender issues, whereas the objective should be mainstreaming gender issues.” Male NGO leader


Suggestions of opportunities for filling communications gaps include:

  • “Retrieving ‘lost’ information that is scattered in journals that are not accessible to many workers.” - University professor in Nigeria
  • “Setting up a virtual library that would, among other opportunities, give incentives for publications relevant to families, women and children – stories, legends, and recipes connected to RTB crops.” - University professor in Bolivia


“There is a need to go back to the future and rediscover the importance of diversity in production systems to secure their resilience, and to work on management practices which meet livelihood and social aspirations. The innovation will come in social and economic sustainability in the system alongside sustainable production practices.” - Staff member of an international public organization


“Based on the documentation given for this program, it is difficult to see how the themes and the outputs coming from the different themes link to the different livelihood options of the farmers and farming communities it is targeting. Why improve productivity and why should farmers adopt those technologies?” - NARES coordinator, Asia-Pacific region


“I am of the view that to make impact on poor producers, the challenge now is making available several already-developed improved varieties through a more aggressive technology delivery and extension system as well as market outlet, including upgrading extension and micro-credit and risk mitigation schemes.” - Leader of a West African NARES


“It is not possible to construct competitiveness without innovation and technology. Information management is indispensable and best accompanied by an innovative communication system.” - President of a Latin American Farmer Association


“RTBs are not usually well positioned within agricultural extension, as decision makers do not have a full appreciation of their true importance. Quality data on true level of production, perhaps through remote-sensing methodologies, is an essential starting point.” - Leader of an international NGO, Africa


“National institutions are very neglected because budgets are low, which is why they often have no capability.” - Female researcher in an Andean country


“Stimulating and strengthening farming systems seems to be good approach, especially for Africa, where RTB are of very important. If ‘known’ good varieties/crops could be made available to the farmer, if post-harvest losses could be reduced and "best practices" used, poverty could be reduced substantially.” -  Donor representative


“In principal this is a good idea. However the execution of such a program is challenging and takes real leadership to make it happen and close the enormous yield gap which currently exists in these crops. A focused approach is needed, not trying to do too many things in too many parts of the world without making any real difference. A long term strategy is needed: 10-50 years instead of the usual 5 years or so.” - University research leader, Australia


Several stakeholders suggested ways to increase RTB impact:

  • Accepting “the need for a more holistic program beyond technology development, where other non-traditional (sometimes neglected) partners have a role in its definition.” - Staff member, international public organization
  • Ensuring that “the program is a single entity not an unconnected group of scientists working on vastly different crops.” - Government research scientist, North America
  • With a “mechanism to allow donor money to fund CGIAR-NARS-Private Sector partnerships, i.e., some funds must flow through CGIAR to the other partners to create coordinated umbrella programs. Currently ….we are …. concerned that CGIAR will use its 'international public good' rhetoric to shy away from engaging fully with partners for development and deployment of new varieties.” – Donor representative
  • “Focus on the things which work and can be delivered and adopted now. Each crop will need a champion to drive the development of these crops in many parts of the world. …If you do not know where you are going you will not get there.” - Leader, Australian university research organization