Thirty-six researchers and collaborators from 10 countries, and 12 states within the U.S. gathered to learn about the annual progress and discuss future opportunities for the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Sustainable Intensification (SIIL). The theme for the meeting held in Manhattan, KS, was: Collaborate, Learn, Adapt.
Participants started the meeting with a knowledge sharing activity. Scientists from each project shared their progress and future plans via poster and small group discussion. Each table formulated questions and comments regarding their work. This was a great opportunity to foster collaboration between researchers of different expertise. Nutritionists, gender specialists, and farming systems experts were able to offer input and guidance on how to best incorporate these disciplines into their work. Each project was able to consider their work from varying viewpoints, ensuring that each domain of sustainable intensification (SI) was being considered and implemented. Continue reading “Collaborate, Learn, Adapt: 2017 SIIL Annual Meeting”
The sustainable intensification of agriculture offers smallholder farmers huge opportunities in the Amhara region of Ethiopia, according to the participants of a workshop on appropriate scale mechanization at Bahir Dar University on the June 8-9, 2016. The introduction of locally-adapted technologies has the potential to raise incomes and nutritional security, reduce drudgery and empower women and youth, offering the people of the region sustainable alternatives to migration to larger urban areas of the country, principally Addis Ababa.
The event was organized by the Appropriate Scale Mechanization Consortium, a $4.7 million four-year project, which is part of the Sustainable Intensification Innovation Lab (SIIL), an initiative of Feed the Future led by the United States Agency for International Development. The consortium component of SIIL, which began in September 2015, seeks to leverage the use of mechanization to improve farm productivity, income and nutrition of smallholder farmers, particularly women, in Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Cambodia and Ethiopia.
Opening the event, Baylie Damtie, the president of Bahir Dar University, underlined the importance of agriculture in the sustainable development of Ethiopia, the key to the industrialization of the country. He also emphasized, however, that this process needed to be introduced at a pace suitable to the needs of the country. Job creation is key, he said.
Continue reading “Opportunities Abound for Mechanized Agriculture in Northwestern Ethiopia”