Recent blog entries

Blog Topics

micro-dosing AEA agricultural extension nutrition impacts alternate wetting and drying adoption NRM 3ie AWD activity update SIAC SPIA agricultural research agriculture CGIAR impact assessments RCTs health agroforestry
  • Following a competitive call for expressions of interest in November 2015, SPIA conducted an expert workshop on how best to approach documentation of adoption of selected Natural Resource Management (NRM) practices linked to CGIAR research outputs (16-17 December, 2015). The NRM practices and countries of interest had been identified as high priority in a previous SPIA exercise of reviewing and rating claims made in annual reports and other relevant literature regarding the scale of uptake of CGIAR-derived NRM research outcomes.

    Traditionally, SPIA would have reviewed EOIs and requested full proposals from a sub-set of proponents. However, considering (1) the unique challenges in defining what constitutes adoption of a specific NRM practice, (2) that existing surveys may already have relevant/useful data or upcoming survey rounds (planned) may offer opportunities to collect additional data, and (3) the typology of proponents anticipated to express interest (academic researchers, private sector entities, CGIAR Centers, remote sensing experts etc.) – SPIA took an innovative approach: all EOI proponents were invited to a workshop wherein collaborations were fostered through a combination of presentation-led discussions and group work.

    Mar 2016
  • We wanted to draw your attention to the last SIAC activities update of 2014 in which you will also find a brief narrative of plans for the next year. Keep an eye out for the Quality (Star) Rating/Review system in the new year. As ever, please write to us with your feedback and questions. We also welcome contributions to the blog on impact assessment (challenges in methodology, data collection, results etc.) at CGIAR Centers and CRPs. We are also happy to post announcements on IA training workshops, conferences or call for proposals.

    With best wishes for the holiday season and a very happy 2015,

    the SPIA @ ISPC family

    Dec 2014
  • At the ISPC-10 meeting on Wednesday, Doug Gollin (SPIA Chair) gave a presentation on the challenges of measuring poverty impacts of agricultural research. Some of his key points (I am paraphrasing)

    Sep 2014
  • Following a call for proposals on nutrition impacts from agricultural research that SPIA issued in mid-2013, five new impact assessment studies are now in the pipeline. The lead scientists from each of these five studies, as well as SPIA and a number of external experts such as Alan Dangour (LSHTM), Inge Brouwer (Wageningen) and James Garrett (IFPRI/IFAD), all gathered in sunny Wageningen, Netherlands, on July 4-5th 2014 for a workshop organised by Erwin Bulte and colleagues from Wageningen University and Research Center.

    Sep 2014
  • by Frédéric Kosmowski, SPIA Research Associate

    Traditionally, documenting adoption outcomes (of crop varieties or natural resource management practices) has done through household surveys and expert elicitations (of extension workers, agricultural scientists, etc.), and involves accuracy and cost issues. Promising alternate technology options includes aerial imaging.

    Widely used in several areas of research, aerial views generally come from two sources: airplane or satellite. In recent years, technological advances have substantial increases the capabilities of drones (also called Unmanned Aerial Vehicles - UAVs), making it possible to consider them for research purposes. With prices for drones currently in the order of USD 300-10,000, and potentially decreasing further as usage expands, it may also become cost effective.

    Jul 2014