All Publications by Year

Browse all SPIA ex post IAs and some selected CGIAR Center/CRP epIAs by year (latest first) or Enter a year

2017

Livestock-related research in CGIAR: what do we know of the impacts?

2017 ISPC, SPIA

Over the past several years, one of the major areas of work for SPIA has been an effort to advance the evidence base and for impact assessments in previously under-evaluated areas of CGIAR research. SPIA’s goal has been to expand impact assessment beyond the narrow domain of crop germplasm improvement where most ex post impact assessments (epIAs) have traditionally concentrated. Accordingly, SPIA has sought to assess the evidence for impact in key areas of CGIAR research effort: irrigation and water management, livestock management, policy-oriented research, natural resource management, agro-forestry, and in-situ conservation of biodiversity. This Brief is based on Jutzi and Rich (2016) review of the impact assessment work on livestock and livestock-related research in the CGIAR.

ISPC, SPIA 2017. Livestock-related research in CGIAR: what do we know of the impacts?. Impact Brief No. 51.

2016

Learning for Adoption: Technology Adoption in Developing Country Agriculture

2016 de Janvry, A., Macours, K. and Sadoulet, E. (Eds.)

Policy briefs from the workshop organized by Ferdi and SPIA on June 1 and 2, 2016, in Clermont-Ferrand.

Productivity growth in agriculture is expected to be the main source of successful structural transformation and industrialization for pre-industrial developingcountries with an un-captured potential in agriculture. Indeed, history tells us that agricultural revolutions have preceded industrial revolutions in most countries withrural populations. Recent experiences with industrialization in countries such as China, India, and Brazil support this proposition. Productivity growth in agriculturerequires the availability of technological innovations for agriculture and adoptionof these innovations by the farm community. In recent years, emphasis has been given to the lag between the presumed availability of promising innovations andtheir adoption. Many factors can be associated with lack of adoption, such as credit constraints, lack of insurance coverage, high transaction costs on markets,or behavioral inadequacies. In addition, as information about new technologiesis a necessary, if not sufficient, condition for adoption, a good understanding of potential information failures that limit farmers adoption of available technologiesis considered key. This puts the focus on the performance of extension services and the transfer of information through social networks, agro-dealers, or farmer’s commercial partners upstream in the value chain.

Motivated by this observation FERDI (Fondation pour les études et recherchessur le développement international) and SPIA (Standing Panel on Impact Assessment of the CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council) organized a workshop to explore the current knowledge on how farmers learn anddecide on adoption. Presented here is a summary of the main conclusions reached in the workshop and a brief outline of the presentations made. The presentationsare summarized in the eleven policy briefs that follow this introduction.

de Janvry, A., Macours, K. and Sadoulet, E. (Eds.) 2016. Learning for Adoption: Technology Adoption in Developing Country Agriculture. Policy briefs from the workshop organized by Ferdi and SPIA, Clermont-Ferrand, June 1-2, 2016.

BD56, an Early-maturing and Drought-tolerant Variety for Bangladesh: Results from a Pilot Evaluation

2016 SPIA

Kyle Emerick (Tufts), Alain de Janvry (UC Berkeley), Elisabeth Sadoulet (UC Berkeley), and Manzoor Dar (IRRI) initiated a pilot evaluation of BD56 starting in the 2015 wet season. BD56 is a recently released rice variety of IRRI that offers both early maturity and drought tolerance. This Brief presents results from the pilot evaluation funded by SPIA. The researchers are currently running a larger experiment in 256 villages in the Rajshahi division of Bangladesh, also funded by SPIA.

ISPC, SPIA 2016. BD56, an early-maturing and drought-tolerant variety for Bangladesh: Results from a pilot evaluation. Impact Brief No. 50.

On the Ground or in the Air? A Methodological Experiment on Crop Residue Cover Measurement in Ethiopia

2016 Kosmowski, F., Stevenson, J., Campbell, J., Ambel, A.A., and Tsegay, A. H.

Maintaining permanent coverage of the soil using crop residues is an important and commonly recommended practice in conservation agriculture. Measuring this practice is an essential step in improving knowledge about the adoption and impact of conservation agriculture. Different data collection methods can be implemented to capture the field level crop residue coverage for a given plot, each with its own implications for the survey budget, implementation speed, and respondent and interviewer burden. This study tests six alternative methods of crop residue coverage measurement among the same sample of rural households in Ethiopia. The relative accuracy of these methods is compared against a benchmark, the line-transect method. The alternative methods compared against the benchmark include: (i) interviewee (respondent) estimation; (ii) enumerator estimation visiting the field; (iii) interviewee with visual-aid without visiting the field; (iv) enumerator with visual-aid visiting the field; (v) field picture collected with a drone and analyzed with image-processing methods; and (vi) satellite picture of the field analyzed with remote sensing methods. Results of the methodological experiment show that survey-based methods tend to underestimate field residue cover. When quantitative data on cover are needed, the best estimates are provided by visual-aid protocols. For categorical analysis (such as greater than 30 percent cover or not), visual-aid protocols and remote sensing methods perform equally well. Among survey-based methods, the strongest correlates of measurement errors are total farm size, field size, distance, and slope. The results deliver a ranking of measurement options that can inform survey practitioners and researchers.

This work is a part of the SIAC (2013-2016) program to develop robust methods to routinely track adoption of CGIAR research outcomes. You can find a bit more information on the collaboration with LSMS-ISA here.

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Varietal Identification in Household Surveys: Results from an Experiment Using DNA Fingerprinting of Sweet Potato Leaves in Southern Ethiopia

2016 Kosmowski, F., Aragaw, A., Kilian, A., Ambel, A.A., Ilukor, J., Yigezu, B. and Stevenson, J.

Sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) varieties have important nutritional differences and there is strong interest to identify nutritionally superior varieties for dissemination. In agricultural household surveys, this information is often collected based on the farmer's self-report. However, recent evidence has demonstrated the inherent difficulties in correctly identifying varieties from self-report information. This study examines the accuracy of self-report information on varietal identification from a data capture experiment on sweet potato varieties in southern Ethiopia. Three household-based methods of identifying varietal adoption are tested against the benchmark of DNA fingerprinting: (A) elicitation from farmers with basic questions for the most widely planted variety; (B) farmer elicitation on five sweet potato phenotypic attributes by showing a visual-aid protocol; and (C) enumerator recording observations on five sweet potato phenotypic attributes using a visual-aid protocol and visiting the field. The reference being the DNA fingerprinting, about 30 percent of improved varieties were identified as local or non-improved, and 20 percent of farmers identified a variety as local when it was in fact improved. The variety names given by farmers delivered inconsistent and fuzzy varietal identities. The visual-aid protocols employed in methods B and C were better than method A, but still way below the adoption estimates given by the DNA fingerprinting method. The findings suggest that estimating the adoption of improved varieties with methods based on farmer self-reports is questionable, and point toward a wider use of DNA fingerprinting, likely to become the gold standard for crop varietal identification.

This work is a part of the SIAC (2013-2016) program to develop robust methods to routinely track adoption of CGIAR research outcomes. You can find a bit more information on the collaboration with LSMS-ISA here.

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Kosmowski, Frederic; Aragaw, Abiyot; Kilian, Andrzej; Ambel, Alemayehu A.; Ilukor, John; Yigezu, Biratu; Stevenson, James. 2016. Varietal identification in household surveys : results from an experiment using DNA fingerprinting of sweet potato leaves in southern Ethiopia. Policy Research working paper; no. WPS 7812. Washington, D.C. : World Bank Group. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/225101473169649006/Varietal-identification-in-household-surveys-results-from-an-experiment-using-DNA-fingerprinting-of-sweet-potato-leaves-in-southern-Ethiopia

An Evaluation of CGIAR Centers’ Impact Assessment Work on Livestock-Related Research (1990 – 2014)

2016 Jutzi, S.C., and Rich, K.M.

Over the past several years, one of the major areas of work for SPIA has been an effort to advance the evidence base and for impact assessments in previously under-evaluated areas of CGIAR research. SPIA’s goal has been to expand impact assessment beyond the narrow domain of crop germplasm improvement where most ex post impact assessments (epIAs) have traditionally concentrated. Accordingly, SPIA has sought to assess the evidence for impact in key areas of CGIAR research effort: irrigation and water management, livestock management, policy-oriented research, natural resource management, agro-forestry, and in-situ conservation of biodiversity. This review of the impact assessment work on livestock and livestock-related research in the CGIAR is the second scoping study commissioned by SPIA to assess the impact evidence across these under-evaluated areas within the CGIAR portfolio.

Jutzi, S.C., and Rich, K.M. 2016. An evaluation of CGIAR Centers’ impact assessment work on livestock-related research (1990-2014). Rome, Italy, Standing Panel on Impact Assessment(SPIA), CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council (ISPC). 69 pp.

2015

Crop Improvement, Adoption and Impact of Improved Varieties in Food Crops in Sub-Saharan Africa

2015 Edited by Walker, T.S., and Alwang, J.

Is Rice Improvement Still Making a Difference? Assessing the Economic, Poverty, and Food Security Impacts of Rice Varieties Released from 1989 to 2009 in Bangladesh, Indonesia and the Philippines

2015 Raitzer, D.A., Sparks, A.H., Huelgas, Z., Maligalig, R., Balangue, Z., Launio, C., Daradjat, A., and Ahmed, H.U.

This is one of the three proposals funded through a competitive call for proposals to evaluate the links between agricultural research and poverty in 2011. More background on the SPIA project (Social impacts: poverty and hunger) can be found here

The productivity impact of the initial diffusion of modern varieties (MVs) of rice across Asia during the 1960s through the 1980s, as part of the “Green Revolution”, is one of the most documented successes of international development assistance in agriculture. However, much less is known about whether continued efforts to further improve rice varieties are making similar contributions to on farm productivity. This study assesses the degree to which post 1989 MVs of rice have led to increased agricultural productivity, economic surplus, welfare for the poor, food security and environmental benefits in Bangladesh, Indonesia and the Philippines.

Raitzer, D.A., Sparks, A.H., Huelgas, Z., Maligalig, R., Balangue, Z., Launio, C., Daradjat, A., and Ahmed, H.U. 2015. Is Rice Improvement Still Making a Difference? Assessing the Economic, Poverty and Food Security Impacts of Rice Varieties Released from 1989 to 2009 in Bangladesh, Indonesia and the Philippines. A report submitted to the Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA), CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council (ISPC). 128 pp.

Ex post impacts of improved maize varieties on poverty in rural Ethiopia

2015 Zeng, D., Alwang, J., Norton, G. W., Shiferaw, B., Jaleta, M. and Yirga, C.

This Agricultural Economics journal article is based on the study that documents the impacts of improved maize varities on household well-being and on overall rural poverty using primary data. In Ethiopia, the last four decades have seen more than 40 improved varieties of maize - including hybrids and OPVs – developed and released by the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research (EIAR) in collaboration with the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT). An Impact Brief (#45) based on the report/study submitted to SPIA is also available. The full report will be published shortly on this site along with the SPIA foreword.

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Zeng, D., Alwang, J., Norton, G. W., Shiferaw, B., Jaleta, M. and Yirga, C. (2015), Ex post impacts of improved maize varieties on poverty in rural Ethiopia. Agricultural Economics. doi: 10.1111/agec.12178

Irrigation and water management research in CGIAR: what do we know of the impacts?

2015 ISPC SPIA

 

A significant proportion of CGIAR research investment has been spent on policy and natural resource management (NRM). However, compared with other areas of research e.g., crop germplasm improvement (CGI), there appear to be relatively few impact assessments (IAs) in this domain. To fill this gap, one of the activities of the Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA)-coordinated Strengthening Impact Assessment in the CGIAR (SIAC) program targets assessments of these presumably ‘under-evaluated areas’ of CGIAR research, including irrigation and water management, agroforestry and policy and social sciences. This brief summarizes the findings and recommendations of a critical review of IAs of CGIAR irrigation and water management research (full report).

ISPC, SPIA 2015. Irrigation and Water Management Research in the CGIAR: What do we know of the impacts?. Impact Brief No. 49.

An Evaluation of CGIAR Centers’ Impact Assessment Work on Irrigation and Water Management Research

2015 Douglas J Merrey

A significant proportion of CGIAR research investment has been spent on policy and natural resource management (NRM). However, compared to other areas of research e.g., crop germplasm improvement (CGI), there appears to be relatively few impact assessments (IAs) in this domain. To fill this gap, one of the activities of the Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA)-coordinated Strengthening Impact Assessment in the CGIAR (SIAC) program targets assessments of these presumably ‘under-evaluated areas’ of CGIAR research, including irrigation and water management, agroforestry, and policy and social sciences.

This report synthesizes the findings and recommendations of a critical review of IAs of CGIAR irrigation and water management research. Critical reviews such as this one are intended to be the first step in encouraging new IAs of the under-evaluated topic in question, as well as provide inputs on improving the quality of IAs.

Merrey, D.J. 2015. An Evaluation of CGIAR Centers’ Impact Assessment Work on Irrigation and Water Management Research. Rome, Italy, Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA), CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council (ISPC). 83 pp.

A chickpea revolution in southern India

2015 SPIA

This SPIA Impact Brief derives from the SPIA commissioned study Short Duration Chickpea Technology: Enabling Legumes Revolution in Andhra Pradesh, India.   

ISPC, SPIA 2015. A Chickpea Revolution in Southern India. Impact Brief No. 48.

Simulation-based Ex Ante Assessment of Sustainable Agricultural Technologies: An Application to Integrated Aquaculture-Agriculture in Bangladesh.

2015 Antle, J.M., Murshed-E-Jahan, K., Crissman, C.C., and Valdivia, R.O.

Antle, J.M., Murshed-E-Jahan, K., Crissman, C.C., and Valdivia, R.O. 2015. Simulation based Ex Ante Assessment of Sustainable Agricultural Technologies: An Application to Integrated Aquaculture-Agriculture in Bangladesh. A report submitted to the Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA), CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council (ISPC). 57 pp.

Impact of Bean Research in Rwanda and Uganda

2015 ISPC SPIA

This Impact Brief (No 46) is based on the study that documents the impacts of improved common bean varieties on field-level yields, costs of production, and household farm incomes among smallholders in Rwanda and Uganda. Effects are also examined so that the number of people escaping poverty due to the diffusion of improved varieties can be calculated. The full report will be published shortly on this site along with the SPIA foreword.

ISPC, SPIA 2015. Impact of Bean Research in Rwanda and Uganda. Impact Brief No. 46.

2014

Improved Maize Varieties and Poverty in Rural Ethiopia

2014 ISPC SPIA

This Impact Brief (No 45) is based on the study that documents the impacts of improved maize varities on household well-being and on overall rural poverty using primary data. In Ethiopia, the last four decades have seen more than 40 improved varieties of maize - including hybrids and OPVs – developed and released by the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research (EIAR) in collaboration with the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT). The full report will be published shortly on this site along with the SPIA foreword. The journal paper (Agricultural Economics) is available on Wiley Online Library.

ISPC, SPIA 2014. Improved Maize Varieties and Poverty in Rural Ethiopia. Impact Brief No. 45.

Towards Appraising the Impact of Legume Research

2014 ISPC SPIA

This Impact Brief (No 44) is based on the Legumes Synthesis Report that documents the most important cases of farmers adopting new varieties, and the economic, social and environmental impacts of legume technologies developed by CGIAR in collaboration with national agricultural research system (NARS) partners (see SPIA Project details here). It reviews research results from over 30 adoption surveys conducted in more than 20 developing countries (primarily the Diffusion and Impact of Improved Varieties in Africa i.e DIIVA study data), which provide evidence that farmers are growing improved legume varieties in many regions. This was one in a series of ex post impact assessments of CGIAR research that examined thematic areas which, up to 2010, had not been properly evaluated but for which anecdotal evidence suggested considerable impact.

ISPC, SPIA 2014. Towards Appraising the Impact of Legume Research. Impact Brief No. 44.

Adoption of Modern Varieties of Food Crops in Sub-Saharan Africa

2014 ISPC, SPIA

In the late 1990s, a global initiative on the impact assessment of crop varietal change estimated that modern varieties (MVs) accounted for about 22% of the growing area of primary food crops across Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) (Evenson and Gollin, 2003). This baseline has recently been updated, widened, and deepened in the CGIAR’s project Diffusion and Impact of Improved Crop Varieties in Sub-Saharan Africa (DIIVA), supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Seven CGIAR Centers and more than 200 individuals – mainly crop improvement scientists in national programs – participated in the DIIVA project, which was directed and coordinated by the Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA) of the CGIAR and administrated through Bioversity International.

ISPC, SPIA 2014. Adoption of modern varieties of food crops in Sub-Saharan Africa. Impact Brief No. 42.

Towards Appraising the Impact of Legume Research: A Synthesis of Evidence

2014 Douglas Pachico

This Legumes Synthesis Report documents the most important cases of farmers adopting new varieties, and the economic, social and environmental impacts of legume technologies developed by CGIAR in collaboration with national agricultural research system (NARS) partners (see SPIA Project details here). It reviews research results from over 30 adoption surveys conducted in more than 20 developing countries (primarily the Diffusion and Impact of Improved Varieties in Africa i.e DIIVA study data), which provide evidence that farmers are growing improved legume varieties in many regions. 

There is ample evidence of widespread adoption of improved bean varieties in Sub-Saharan Africa, chickpea varieties in southern India and cowpea varieties in West Africa, as well as small-scale adoption of improved chickpea varieties in the Horn of Africa.

This was one in a series of ex post impact assessments of CGIAR research that examined thematic areas which, up to 2010, had not been properly evaluated but for which anecdotal evidence suggested considerable impact. You can read the key findings in the Impact Brief (#44).

Pachico, D. 2014. Towards appraising the impact of legume research: A synthesis of evidence. Rome, Italy,Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA), CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council (ISPC).39 pp.

Measuring the Effectiveness of Crop Improvement Research in Sub-Saharan Africa from the Perspectives of Varietal Output, Adoption, and Change: 20 Crops, 30 Countries, and 1150 Cultivars in Farmers’ Fields

2014 Tom Walker, Arega Alene, Jupiter Ndjeunga, Ricardo Labarta, Yigezu Yigezu, Aliou Diagne, Robert Andrade, Rachel Muthoni Andriatsitohaina, Hugo De Groote, Kai Mausch, Chilot Yirga, Franklin Simtowe, Enid Katungi, Wellington Jogo, Moti Jaleta and Sushil Pan

A synthesis report on the results of a CGIAR project: Diffusion and Impact of Improved Varieties in Africa (DIIVA) Project – the first major study to focus on the diffusion of improved crop varieties in SSA. Supported by the Bill Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), seven CGIAR Centers and their partners carried out adoption research and impact assessments as part of DIIVA, which was directed and coordinated by CGIAR Independent Science & Partnership Council’s (ISPC) Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA) and administrated through Bioversity International.This work has been driven by thre e complementary activities that respond to three project objectives: (1) documenting the key performance indicators of crop genetic improvement; (2) collecting nationally representative survey data on varietal adoption; and (3) assessing the impact of varietal change. This synthesis paper reports on progress in the first two areas: documenting the performance of crop improvement in SSA and validating estimates from expert panels with results from nationally representative surveys on the diffusion of MVs. For more information on DIIVA: please refer the project page

Walker, T., Alene, A., Ndjeunga, J., Labarta, R., Yigezu, Y., Diagne, A., Andrade, R., Muthoni Andriatsitohaina, R., De Groote, H., Mausch, K., Yirga, C., Simtowe, F., Katungi, E., Jogo, W., Jaleta, M. & Pandey, S. 2014. Measuring the Effectiveness of Crop Improvement Research in Sub-Saharan Africa from the Perspectives of Varietal Output, Adoption, and Change: 20 Crops, 30 Countries, and 1150 Cultivars in Farmers’ Fields. Report of the Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (SPIA), CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council (ISPC) Secretariat: Rome, Italy.

Impact assessment of agricultural research, institutional innovation, and technology adoption: Introduction to the special section

2014 Maredia, M.K., Shankar, B., Kelley, T.G., & Stevenson, J.R.

This article introduces a special section on impact assessment of agricultural research, institutional innovation and technology adoption. It is based on papers presented at a pre-conference workshop held at the International Conference of Agricultural Economists at Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil in August 2012. It briefly reviews the history of impact assessment of agricultural research and discusses the contributions made by each of the papers included in this section towards advancing the theory and practice of assessing the outcomes and impacts of agricultural research for development.
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Maredia, M.K., Shankar, B., Kelley, T.G., & Stevenson, J.R. 2014. Impact assessment of agricultural research, institutional innovation, and technology adoption: Introduction to the special section. Food Policy (44): 214 - 217

2013

Case-studies on the impact of germplasm collection, conservation, characterization and evaluation (GCCCE) in the CGIAR

2013 Robinson, J. & Srinivasan, C.S.

Although many studies over the years have sought to document the impacts of agricultural research, there remain critical gaps in the extent to which different components of the CGIAR portfolio have been studied. One area of CGIAR research and related activities that many recognize as being under - assessed is ‘germplasm collection, conservation, characterization and evaluation’ (GCCCE). This is a large area of CGIAR activity: in 2008 - 2010, approximately 12% of the CGIAR research spending was devoted to this activity. Although cumulative numbers are difficult to calculate, it has been estimated – based on data compiled and reported in earlier CGIAR Financial Reports – that in the years from 1970 to 2010, a total of about US $800 million (in 2002 dollars) has been spent on GCCCE related activities. In spite of this sizeable investment, there have been few studies that have attempted to assess the impact of these GCCCE activities or to quantify the benefits derived. The aim of this study commissioned by SPIA was to measure and value - to the extent possible - the impacts related to GCCCE related activities by the CGIAR. As past efforts in this sort of assessment have been limited in scope, scale, data and methods, one of the initial objectives of this study was to propose a conceptual framework and set of methods that might be applied in future efforts to estimate these types of impacts. The perspective taken with respect to valuation was derived from the concept of total economic value, which embraces multiple sources of value, although not all of which equally amenable to measurement.

Robinson, J. & Srinivasan, C.S. 2013. Case-studies on the impact of germplasm collection, conservation, characterization and evaluation (GCCCE) in the CGIAR

2012

Ex-post environmental impact assessment: lessons from four CGIAR case studies

2012 ISPC, SPIA

One of the four Impact Briefs summarizing final report and four case studies from the SPIA project on Assessing Environmental Impacts (2008-2011). More information on the project here.

ISPC, SPIA. 2012. Ex-post environmental impact assessment: lessons from four CGIAR case studies. Impact Brief No. 39

Does crop improvement reduce agricultural expansion?

2012 ISPC, SPIA

One of the four Impact Briefs summarizing final report and four case studies from the SPIA project on Assessing Environmental Impacts (2008-2011). More information on the project here.

ISPC, SPIA. 2012. Does crop improvement reduce agricultural expansion? Impact Brief No. 40

Environmental impacts of agricultural research: concepts and tools to strengthen the evidence base.

2012 ISPC, SPIA

One of the four Impact Briefs summarizing final report and four case studies from the SPIA project on Assessing Environmental Impacts (2008-2011). More information on the project here.

ISPC, SPIA. 2012. Environmental impacts of agricultural research: concepts and tools to strengthen the evidence base. Impact Brief No. 38

Environmental impacts of agricultural research: an overview

2012 ISPC, SPIA

One of the four Impact Briefs summarizing final report and four case studies from the SPIA project on Assessing Environmental Impacts (2008-2011). More information on the project here.

ISPC, SPIA. 2012. Environmental impacts of agricultural research: an overview. Impact Brief No. 37

2011

Measuring the Environmental Impacts of Agricultural Research: Theory and Applications to CGIAR Research

2011 CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council

Final report from the SPIA project on Assessing Environmental Impacts (2008-2011). More information on the project here.

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CGIAR Independent Science and Partnership Council. 2011. Measuring the Environmental Impacts of Agricultural Research: Theory and Applications to CGIAR Research. Independent Science and Partnership Council Secretariat: Rome, Italy.

Recent advances in impact analysis methods for ex-post impact assessments of agricultural technology: options for the CGIAR

2011 De Janvry, A., Dustan, A. & Sadoulet, E.

This paper was commissioned by SPIA in 2010 and appraises a range of recent methodological innovations that are now available to practitioners when carrying out analysis of the impact of agricultural research. It argues for greater focus on methods that provide rigorous casual reference.
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De Janvry, A., Dustan, A. & Sadoulet, E. 2011. Recent advances in impact analysis methods for ex-post impact assessments of agricultural technology: options for the CGIAR. Rome, ISPC. 40 pp.

2010

Improved maize benefits millions of Africa's poor

2010 ISPC, SPIA

  • Modern maize varieties represented less than 5% of the maize area in the 1970s but accounted for about 60% in 2005.
  • According to FAO data, yields increased from as low as 0.88 t/ha in 1971 to over 2 t/ha in 2005, with an average growth rate of 2% per year; the area of land sown to maize increased by over 3% annually over the same period.
  • The estimated number of people moved out of poverty through adoption of new maize varieties rose gradually during the 1980s to reach more than one million per year during the past ten years.
  • A total of US$308 million was invested in maize research between 1971 and 2005; international maize research accounted for about 66% (US$204 million) of this investment.
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ISPC, SPIA. 2010. Improved maize benefits millions of Africa's poor. Impact Brief No. 34

Impact Assessment of Policy-Oriented International Agricultural Research: Evidence and Insights from Case Studies

2010 Walker ,T., Ryan, J. & Kelley, T.

Assessing the impact of policy-oriented research is fraught with methodological difficulties ranging from attributing influence on policy change to constructing an appropriate counterfactual. The six case studies in this special section address these challenges in the context of international agricultural research. Methodological and analytical lessons are drawn about the uptake and influence of policy-oriented research on policy change and about the conduct of cost–benefit analysis for such research. The authors of the studies effectively used a key-informant approach to document uptake and influence for policy reforms that were believed to have incorporated well-defined outputs from policy research.
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Walker ,T., Ryan, J. & Kelley, T. 2010. Impact assessment of policy-oriented international agricultural research: evidence and insights from case studies. World Development 38 (10): 1453–1461

Publication cover image thumbnail More trees, more milk, more money

Publication cover image thumbnail

2010 ISPC, SPIA

The objective of this study is twofold, to demonstrate (1) the effects of fodder shrubs on milk production and their value at the household and regional level and (2) the contribution of research by the World Agroforestry Center towards strengthening the impact of fodder shrubs. The study is a synthesis of previous studies related to dissemination, adoption and impact combined with two new analyses, one quantitatively measuring the impact of the shrubs through econometric analysis and the other a qualitative analysis to better understand constraints on adoption and gender issues related to participation and control of benefits from fodder shrubs.

Among the study findings are that fodder shrubs have been widely adopted in East Africa, by an estimated 205,000 smallholder dairy farmers by 2005. Women were active in plating shrubs, as monitoring found almost half of planters to be women. Several studies have confirmed that shrubs do have an impact on milk production. While feeding trials have found that 1 kilogram of calliandra increases milk production by 0.6-0.8 kilograms, a new survey of farmers’ perceptions in Kenya found the effect to be about half as large after controlling for the effects of breeds, season and other feeds. Whether the effect is the lower or higher estimate, the overall impact of the shrubs in terms of additional net income from milk is high, at US$19.7 million to US$29.6 milion in Kenya alone over the past 15 years.

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ISPC, SPIA. 2010. More trees, more milk, more money. Impact Brief No. 35