CTA Publishing

CTA’s regular update on its agricultural publications portfolio

July 2019 - No. 92

#D4Ag: A priority theme for CTA and the topic of a major report

"Digitalisation is crumbling all sorts of borders and African agriculture will be deeply impacted. Technologies can help stimulate innovation for sustainable agri-food systems and produce better and safer food while preserving natural resources and biodiversity. But we need to be conscious and support solutions that are sustainable and that are tailored to countries’ needs, and embedded into conducive and broader innovation systems", says Leonard Mizzi, Head of Unit at the European Commission, DG for International Cooperation and Development. CTA’s new report on the digitalisation of African agriculture explains why Africa needs a digitally-enabled agricultural transformation, envisages the evolution of digitalisation for agriculture (D4Ag) solutions and gives recommendations for furthering a sustainable, inclusive D4Ag agenda. It is illustrated by seven country case studies. Read it now and discover other publications related to the topic.

The Digitalisation of African Agriculture Report 2018–2019

An inclusive, digitally-enabled agricultural transformation could help achieve meaningful livelihood improvements for Africa’s smallholder farmers and pastoralists. It could drive greater engagement in agriculture from women and youth and create employment opportunities along the value chain. At CTA we staked a claim on this power of digitalisation to more systematically transform agriculture early on. Digitalisation, focusing on not individual ICTs but the application of these technologies to entire value chains, is a theme that cuts across all of our work. In youth entrepreneurship, we are fostering a new breed of young ICT ‘agripreneurs’. In climate-smart agriculture multiple projects provide information that can help towards building resilience for smallholder farmers. And in women empowerment we are supporting digital platforms to drive greater inclusion for women entrepreneurs in agricultural value chains.

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Overcoming challenges to digital agribusiness start-ups

The recent CTA workshop on ‘catalysing actionable knowledge to enhance next-generation ACP agribusiness through digitalisation’ identified five intersecting drivers that explain what farmer-oriented agribusinesses expect to achieve by investing in digitalisation: reduced risk, raised productivity, increased efficiency, improved decisions, and enhanced market access.

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Big data for smallholder farmers: The case of MUIIS Uganda

There is massive scope for linking farmers to valuable knowledge and agricultural services through Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) as a pathway to driving improved productivity and market access, creating opportunities for higher incomes and better food security as a result. In Uganda, as in many sub-Saharan countries, lack of timely and accurate access to information about weather, financial services, crop management, markets and climate coping mechanisms is a serious obstacle for smallholder farmers, preventing them from achieving higher yields and selling their produce for better prices.

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Innovate for agriculture: Young ICT entrepreneurs overcoming challenges and transforming agricultures

The report introduces 30 young innovators, 21 featured with full stories, and nine other "innovators to watch". They come from countries including Barbados, Botswana, Cameroon, Côte d'Ivoire, Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda, Jamaica, Senegal, Tanzania. The publication presents a multidimensional picture of the emerging field of ICT entrepreneurship in agriculture in developing countries.

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Enhancing next-generation ACP agribusiness through digitalisation

Do innovative digital solutions improve the performance, competitiveness and profitability of farmer-oriented agribusinesses in African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries? Thirty practitioners attending a recent CTA workshop zoomed in on real cases to test this question, assessing what works, how and why and drawing out insights and lessons – actionable knowledge – for wider application. Workshop participants identified five intersecting drivers that explain why farmer-oriented agribusinesses invest in digitalisation: to reduce risk, raise productivity, increase efficiency, improve decisions, and enhance access to markets.

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Latest releases

Experience capitalization: Stronger communities in South East Asia

The stories in this booklet come from different teams working in Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Malaysia, the Philippines, Laos and India, with all of them addressing the main challenges that farmers and the rural communities in this region face. A different context, which provides different challenges to the ones CTA has been working with. These stories, however, show many lessons that are equally applicable in the ACP countries with which we are more familiar.

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Whole-family approach to agricultural market success

This brief describes how Women in Business Development Incorporated (WIBDI), a non-profit organisation in Samoa, works with farming families to produce highvalue products for local and global markets. Shifting away from a women-focused approach, WIBDI now uses an approach that involves the whole family, keeping all family members on board. It has also invested in digital applications and resources to increase the efficiency of operations, profile the producers and their products, and facilitate engagement with markets and customers.

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Best seller

Challenges and opportunities in agriculture for African youth

This brief explores the challenges and opportunities facing young people trying to enter the agricultural and agribusiness sector. It focuses on actions that governments and other development actors can take to make the sector more attractive to young people, with an emphasis on those that can increase productivity, strengthen the value chains and increase the participation of young people in policy dialogue.

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CTA highlights

"The speed at which digitalisation for agriculture (D4Ag) is developing, particularly in Africa, provides exciting opportunities."
Michael Hailu, Director

Spore 193: Stemming youth migration - Opportunities in agriculture

Download our latest Spore issue

CTA Agricultural Publications: Where ideas grow

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This document has been made with the financial assistance of the European Union. However, it remains under the sole responsibility of its author(s) and never reflects CTA’s or its co-publisher’s or European Union’s opinions or statements whatsoever nor as well the opinion of any country or State member. The user should make his/her own evaluation as to the appropriateness of any statements, argumentations, experimental technique or method as described in the work.