Fertilizer & Soil Health in Africa - Research & Policy Conference

  • Date
  • Time
    08:00 am > 05:00 pm UTC+03:00

Amidst global supply shocks and price volatility, building a sustainable future for African agriculture requires innovative solutions. On March 27, 2024, the CGIAR Research Initiatives on National Policies and Strategies (NPS) and Excellence in Agronomy (EiA) will host a vital research and policy conference at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) in Nairobi, Kenya for a critical research and policy conference on fertilizer and soil health!

The conference is themed: “Fertilizer and Soil Health in Africa Amid Global Supply and Price Shocks: Emerging Lessons and Evidence for Policy Guidance”, A Crucial Research and Policy. This event highlights a critical challenge: enhancing agricultural productivity in Africa amidst global economic crises.

Why It Matters:

  • Food Security: Healthy soil and efficient fertilizer use are essential to sustainable food production in Africa, facing threats like climate change and price shocks.
  • Shaping Policy: The conference aims to generate evidence-based insights for policies that empower farmers and protect the environment.
  • Collaborative Problem-Solving: Network with leading experts and contribute to finding solutions through interactive discussions and knowledge sharing.

Why Attend? 

  • Uncover insights: Gain cutting-edge knowledge on maximizing agricultural productivity, sustainability, and farmer well-being in Africa’s complex ecosystem.
  • Shape policy: Contribute to actionable policy recommendations through interactive discussions with policymakers and experts on fertilizer, soil health, and global challenges.
  • Network and collaborate: Connect with leading researchers and development partners to build synergies and advance solutions for resilient African agriculture.

What to expect: 

  • Expert presentations: Deep dive into research on fertilizer efficiency, soil health, climate-smart practices, and more.
  • Engaging roundtables: Bridge the gap between research and policy through interactive discussions.

Register now and join us in shaping a greener and more prosperous future for African agriculture.

Tentative Event Agenda

Timing and Description Presenter/Speaker
Registration (8:30 AM-9:00 AM)
Welcome and introductory remarks

10 min

CGIAR Research Initiatives hosting this conference

NPS: Clemens Breisinger, NPS Lead

EiA:  Mandla Nkomo, Chief Growth Officer, Excellence in Agronomy Initiative

Session 1: Fertilizer subsidies and subsidy policies

(9:10-10:30 AM)

(i)       Jan Duchoslav: “Fertilizer subsidies in Malawi from past to present”

(ii)     Emmanuel Rukundo: “Input Subsidies, Farm Production and Commercialization: A Review of Literature and Empirical Evidence from an E-Voucher Subsidy Scheme in Uganda”

(iii)   Hailemariam Ayalew: “Impact of fertilizer subsidy on farm productivity amidst the global fertilizer crisis: Evidence from Kenya”

(iv) Christone Nyondo: “Productivity impact of integrating soil fertility management interventions in input subsidy programs: Evidence from a randomized controlled trial in Malawi”

Coffee break (10:30-10:45 AM)
Session 2: Diagnostics and decision support


(i)       Conrad Addikah: “The future of soil fertility testing in Africa: Spectroscopy techniques as a reliable alternative to rapid and affordable soil fertility tests for smallholder farmers”

(ii)     Shamie Zingore: “Optimizing nutrient management to unlock sub-Saharan Africa’s crop production potential”

(iii)   Berber Kramer: “Digital innovations to increase impacts of agricultural insurance on agricultural investments (e.g., fertilizer): Evidence from a randomized trial in Kenya”

Session 3: Technology prioritization and targeting


(i)       João Vasco Silva: “The burden of acid soils for crop production in sub-Saharan Africa”

(ii)     Dries Roobroeck: “Technology toolkit for local farm input solutions to fix leaky fertilizer and soil health RIPE”

(iii)    Marc Corbeels: “Effect of mineral fertilizer on soil organic carbon content in sub-Saharan Africa”

(iv)    Awiti Alex: “Revitalizing tropical soils: A holistic approach to restoring soil health”

Lunch break (1:00-2:00 PM)
Shocks and the profitability of fertilizer amidst crises

(2:00-3:40 PM)

(i)       Kibrom Abay or Guush Berhane: “Revisiting the yield response and profitability of chemical fertilizers in Ethiopia amidst the global fuel-food-fertilizer crisis”

(ii)     Gebrelibanos Gebremariam: “Drought, fertilizer use intensity, and land productivity in eastern and southern Africa.”

(iii)   Killian Banda: “An extensive game under complete information: Approach to Sub-Saharan African fertilizer markets development”

(iv)    David Spielman: “Advancing fertilizer policy reforms in the midst of crisis: Evidence from Rwanda’s experience”

(v)     Mulubrhan Amare: “What role do conflicts play in fertilizer use and maize yield response in Nigeria?”

Coffee break (3:40-4:00 PM)
Panel discussion


What we (don’t) know about fertilizer and soil health in Africa: how can research best guide public and private investments in 2024 and beyond?


a)      Pauline Chivenge (APNI/IRR)

b)     Tilahun Amede (AGRA)

c)      Mandla Nkomo, Chief Growth Officer, Excellence in Agronomy Initiative

Closing and concluding remarks (5:00-5:15) Summary of key insights and takeaway (Jordan Chamberlin/Kibrom Abay/Shamie Zingore/Pauline Chivenge)



Video Highlights:


This work is part of the CGIAR Research Initiatives onNational Policies and Strategies (NPS) and Excellence in Agronomy (EiA) We would like to thank all funders who supported this research through their contributions to the CGIAR Trust Fund.