Multi Agency Partnerships for Technical Change in West African Agriculture

January 2000 to December 2000

In most countries in West Africa the majority of the population depends on rainfed agriculture. Technologies exist to increase productivity, but a combination of political insecurity, failing infrastructure and inadequate development of civil society have hampered the transfer of knowledge to poor farmers. For similar reasons, private sector service providers do not reach many remote, rural areas. In addition, labour migration leaves women as the principal farmers in many areas and they are often discriminated against in other sectors such as health and education.

Recent efforts to reform public sector research and extension services in West Africa, have been slow and only partly successful. Reform in (government organisations) GOs to include participatory problem-driven approaches have considered the scope for partnership between RRIs (Regional Research Institutions), GOs, NGOs and where possible and appropriate, farmers' organisations (FOs). It is claimed that Multi-Agency Partnerships (MAPs) such as these can reorient GOs by making demands on them and complementing their technical skills with those of NGOs in participatory needs assessment, screening of technical options, group formation and promotion of joint action. In the light of the increased emphasis on strengthening civil society, the climate is opportune for extending and expanding such partnerships.

The project has two elements:

  1. research towards recommendations on the modalities of multi-agency partnerships in promoting technical change in West African agriculture.
  2. the dissemination of this information through a programme of workshops, visits, Best Practice guidelines and a handbook in English and French.


Rice production and livelihoods in Ghana

Research reports and studies | May 2003 | G.Kranjac-Berisavljevic’, R.M. Blench and R.Chapman

West Africa is the poorest region of the world and in most countries the majority of the population depends on rainfed agriculture. Chronic malnutrition is a constant feature of rural life in many areas, partly because agricultural productivity is so low....


Case study of rice production systems in Nigeria

Working and discussion papers | March 2003 | Selbut R. Longtau

Although rice is a traditional crop in Nigeria, local production was limited until recently. Internal demand is growing and, at the same time, rice is a major commodity of world trade. Nigeria is therefore under pressure from international bodies not to...


La riziculture au Mali

Research reports and studies | December 2001

L’objectif général de l’étude est de fournir un document qui présente assez bien la situation de toutes les formes de riziculture au Mali. Un tel document s’avère très utile lorsqu’on est appelé à définir des orientations stratégiques en matière de politique...


National workshop on rice production in Ghana

Working and discussion papers | November 2000

The papers presented here formed the formal framework for discussion during a three day workshop held as part of the Multi-Agency Partnerships research project which is investigating technical change in West African agriculture through the study of rice...


A review and description of rice production systems in Nigeria

Research reports and studies | January 2000 | Selbut R. Longtau

This review is the first part of a DFID-funded research project on how the concept of Multi-Agency Partnerships (M-APs) can be implemented in West Africa to bring about increased crop output through the rapid adoption of improved seeds and similar technologies...


Rice production in Nigeria: country profile

Working and discussion papers | January 2000

In some areas there is a long tradition of rice growing, but for many, rice has been considered a luxury food for special occasions only. With the increased availability of rice, it has become part of the everyday diet of many in Nigeria.


Rice production in Ghana: country profile

Working and discussion papers | January 2000

Ghana is generally regarded as one of the more successful examples of an economic turnaround in sub-Saharan Africa. From an over-bureaucratic centralised state which led to a currency collapse in the late 1970s, Ghana has become a relative island of political...