On 17 June 2019, we were delighted to welcome guest speakers Dr Todd Rosenstock (Senior Agriculture & Environmental Scientist) and Dr Christine Lamanna (Climate-change Ecologist & Decision Analyst) of World Agroforestry (ICRAF) who led a seminar on mainstreaming climate-smart agriculture (CSA) in sub-Saharan Africa. They have worked extensively with development partners including NEPAD, national and sub national governments, iNGOs and farmers to build the evidence base to support informed decision making and efforts to scale up CSA. The results have influenced policies, programming and investments in more than 10 countries. Their work is part of the ICRAF’s Thematic Research Area called Land Health Decisions (LHD), an interdisciplinary team including a diverse range of expertise from soil to decision science.
This webinar was part of a two day pump-priming visit to spur collaborations between the University of Leeds and ICRAF on CSA and covered two main themes:
Act 1: Evidence, influence and change. ICRAF showcased experiences of conducting and disseminating CSA research in Africa. This was framed under the auspices of linking knowledge to action and by the arc of CSA science. They specifically discussed what has worked and the challenges to creating evidence and informing change in the dynamic environment and in close partnership with next users of the information. Information about LHD and ICRAF programs beyond CSA was also discussed, and more details on Todd and Christine’s research can be found here. Download slides for Act 1
Act 2: The CSA Compendium. The second part of the seminar discussed the team’s flagship knowledge product. The CSA Compendium is a meta-dataset compiled to explore questions around the ‘climate-smartness’ of agricultural technologies. That is, what are the effects of shifting from one management practice to another on productivity, resilience and mitigation outcomes, with an interest to uncover what the data say from what works where and for whom. The Compendium contains more than 80,000 observations from over 1400 African agricultural studies linked to detailed covariates such as climate, soil, and socio-economics. Download slides for Act 2