The European Alliance on Agricultural knowledge for Development

Agrinatura Capacity building and strengthening

 

  • Strengthening the national capacity building systems in agriculture in the developing countries is a key milestone to address the challenges of food security, sustainable use of natural resources and poverty reduction in the rural areas of the world.
  • The recently increased attention to higher education and strengthening the capacities after many years of neglect is welcome, but many institutions  in the South are for this purpose still weak.
  • Funding, partnerships, leveraging, and long-term two-way commitment are required to strengthen the capacity of local institutions.
  • Universities and training centers, on their part, need to demonstrate their commitment to both upstream and downstream development needs.
  • Research, education and development must be well-connected to keep education relevant.
  • Research however needs to be end-user oriented and universities need to strengthen their engagement in the innovation process.
  • Multi-stakeholder platforms are important and necessary as both capacity building and innovation fora. The facilitation of such processes, recognized as a public good, should be funded by governments and donors.

AGRINATURA’S actions in the field of education are two-fold:

  • Develop an integrated offer of capacity building in Europe in agriculture for development and integrated management of natural resources;
  • Support and strengthen the capacities to build capacities in the South, through various partnerships and projects.

AGRINATURA’S priority fields of action are the following:

  • Definition of clear and coherent integrated policies for research, education, rural development;
  • Reviewing and harmonizing university policies to enhance collaborative training and education;
  •  Institutional analyses to support demand-driven and tailor-made learning packages (fit-for-purpose) to optimize action;
  • Reform of curricula to better integrate disciplines, more extensive use of experiential learning and closer relationships with the social and economic stakeholders through internships and systems research;
  • Emphasizing non-technical capacities development like value of social and human skills, communication and negotiation skills and leadership competence;
  • Learning from practice, by “getting the field to the ‘class-room’” and vice-versa, in processes combining learning from experiences, reflection and documentation.
  • Combining different methods relevant to the context and needs (graduate and postgraduate trainings, seminars, coaching and e-learning, work-based learning, etc)
  • Strengthening universities’ efforts to develop ICT infrastructure and e-learning facilities to manage joint degrees and enhance research and networking
  • Developing multistakeholders platforms, in establishing value chains, identifying and analysing needs pertaining to : (i) complex problems affecting their members (ii) exchange of experiences and joint learning (iii) advocacy for institutional, policy changes and funding, (iv) resource mobilization (v) capacity strengthening.