Capacity building for Africa’s future agrifood system: challenges and the way forward

An expert panel at the recent African Conference of Agricultural Economists discussed what should be done to improve skills of millions of people who work in Africa’s agrifood systems.

Improving skills of millions of people who work in Africa’s agrifood systems is essential for the continent’s agricultural transformation. While the role of good policies and institutions has long been recognized as drivers of agricultural growth, the role of human capacity – hard skills, soft skills, and values – has only recently become adequately appreciated. To explore how best to develop and expand these skills in Africa, the CGIAR Research Program on Policies, Institutions, and Markets (PIM) organized a panel discussion on “The Role of Institutional Capacity Development in Africa’s Agricultural Transformation” at the recent African Conference of Agricultural Economists, held in Abuja, Nigeria, on September 23-26, 2019.

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The organizers are grateful to the esteemed panel, which included: Adebayo Aromolaran, Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture at Adekunle Ajasin University; Lulama Traub, Technical Director at RENAPRI; Soji Adelaja, John A Hannah Distinguished Professor at Michigan State University; Richard Mkandawire, Professor at Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources; and Njuguna Ndungu, Executive Director of the African Economic Research Consortium. Closing remarks were made by Elliot Mghenyi, the World Bank. Thomas Jayne, Professor at Michigan State University, moderated the event.