Earlier this month, the Africa RISING project in the Ethiopian highlands organised its annual review and planning meeting. On the agenda: Reviewing progress in 2015, discussing future plans. Around 60 participants representing CGIAR partners, national and local government representatives, NGOs, universities and the private sector attended.
Welcoming the participants, Siboniso Moyo, ILRI Director General’s Representative in Ethiopia explained how the project is going through an important stage – completing its first phase and  developing a possible second phase.
Peter Thorne, Africa RISING project coordinator in Ethiopia highlands, briefly explained what is to be expected from the meeting.  He reminded participants that the first phase of the  project has been on the ground for the last four years and coming to the end. A possible phase two will focus on scaling through partnership for broader impact.
Poster presentations
On the first day, nine posters were presented by CGIAR partners emphasizing the research activities that have taken place, key findings, implications of the research outputs for generating development outcomes, how this could continue in phase II and current partnership and future engagement for scaling. The posters focused on the following key areas:
•    Decision support tools for fertilizer recommendation
•    Role of agribusinesses and processing in crop and livestock value chains
•    Feeds and forage action research highlights in the Africa RISING sites of the Ethiopian highlands
•    Food and feed crops varietal selection and crop management
•    Soil and water management at farm and landscape scale
•    Untapped opportunities: enhancing food and nutritional security through introducing high value fruit trees in the highlands of  Ethiopia
•    Innovation platforms, capacity development and knowledge management/transfer
•    Gender and nutrition research
•    Economic impact of market facilities in central highlands of Ethiopia: Menz- Gishe
Brainstorming on possible phase 2 focus areas, participants refined ideas and priorities on:

  • Integrated sheep / cereal / legume / potato
  • Creating climate smart landscapes
  • Mainstreaming nutrition and gender in SI
  • Delivering small-scale mechanization to highland smallholders, with small scale agro-dealers, traders and cooperatives for better market access and sustainable production
  • Intensifying and diversifying home gardens and farm level agro systems
  • Capacity building of knowledge-based technologies (through national programs) for SI and capitalizing on innovation platforms at national level
  • Agricultural rainwater / irrigation water management across landscapes Integrated enset disease management and production
  • Fodder development – scaling at farm and watershed level
  • Decision-support tools for soil fertility management

These ideas will now be turned into more concrete narratives for consideration as part of the phase 2 proposal.

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