Ensuring impact and delivery

IITA Business Incubation Platform: Commercializing and scaling innovations

  • October 16, 2020

IITA set up the Business Incubation Platform (BIP)  to commercialize and scale up innovations for farmers from IITA and other CGIAR institutions in Africa. It is 100% owned by IITA. These innovations are validated in laboratories and trial fields and  incubated and evaluated for their scaling readiness, and feasibility as a sustainable product, service, or a new variety for a specific market segment. The final step is commercialization with a private sector partner to genereate more impact and funding for new research. For several years now, BIP has been evolving into a fully commercial...

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Integrated digital tools for accelerating agricultural transformation in sub-Saharan Africa 

  • October 16, 2020

In the last decade information and communication technologies (ICTs) have fast emerged as frontline tools for transforming agricultural systems in sub-Saharan Africa. Governments, developmental organizations, and the donor community are increasingly depending on ICTs to unleash the potential of rural economies and bridge agricultural value chains for enhanced profitability. IITA has been at the forefront of using ICTs for research management and knowledge sharing, including extension, scaling out, e-learning, collaboration, and agricultural services enhancement. IITA believes that sharing and delivery...

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Digital extension: Reaching farmers at scale and helping to root out weeds

  • October 16, 2020

For Ngunan Chiichii, a farmer in Benue State, north central Nigeria, cassava farming has become an exciting venture because even with her palasa phone (non-smartphone), she can now access improved agronomy recommendations in her palm, to control weeds and get better yield from her cassava farm. The challenge of African farmers in context Mrs Chiichii, a mother of 5, was among thousands of farmers that used to spend hundreds of hours annually stooping to control weeds using hoes and machetes on a hectare of cassava farm in Benue. “At some point, I wanted to quit cassava cultivation, but on second...

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IITA Youth in Agribusiness initiative… taking a STEP ahead

  • October 16, 2020

 The IITA Youth in Agripreneurs (IYA) started as a youth-led exploration of agribusiness incubation in August 2012 and established diverse learning enterprises. It expanded through the creation of additional groups. A set of operating strategies evolved based on gender equality, teamwork, leadership, and enterprise experimentation. Stakeholders and several agencies were attracted to the IYA approach and funds were made available to both formalize and expand its operations. The Agripreneurs approach is built upon reorienting educated youth toward self-employment in agriculture and growing those...

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Scaling readiness: A scientific approach to scaling innovations

  • October 16, 2020

Scaling innovations is one of the biggest challenges facing research and development organizations. The international community invests significant resources in the design and testing of innovations to overcome challenges such as food insecurity, malnutrition, and environmental degradation. Many of those innovations start as an idea that is then developed in a laboratory and finally tested with end-users. Although initial results and testing are often promising, few lead to real impact at scale. For the past three years, a group of dedicated scientists representing IITA, Wageningen University,...

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