Who we are

Latest InnovAfrica meeting in South Africa at the project site in August 2018
Latest InnovAfrica meeting in South Africa at the project site in August 2018

The institutions behind InnovAfrica

The InnovAfrica project which was aimed at improving food and nutritional security in Africa, has been funded under the European Union (EU) Africa Research and Innovation Partnership, a partnership between EU and the African Union. 

The project has been implemented by a consortium of 16 institutions from Africa and Europe and has jointly been coordinated by the Norwegian Institute of Bio-economy (NIBIO) and the Bioscience eastern and central Africa-ILRI (BecA-ILRI) Hub.

The project partners in alphabetical order include (information about their respective roles from the application document):

  • Agricultural Research Council (South Africa)
    The Agricultural Research Council of South Africa is mandated by government to conduct agricultural research and development, and drive technology development and transfer in South Africa through 11 institutes distributed across the country. The ARC has expertise in most agricultural fields and commodities, and its wide national network will assist in effective promotion and dissemination of InnovAfrica results.
  • BecA/ILRI Hub
    BecA will use its existing networks/ and partnerships with national agricultural research systems (NARS) in 18 countries in east and central African, and its regional networks with the Association for strengthening agricultural research in east and central Africa (ASARECA), Common Markets for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), Southern Africa Network for Biosciences (SANBio) to promote InnovAfrica results and create wider impacts.
  • Haramaya University (Ethiopia)
    HU is one of the main universities for agriculture in Ethiopia which has the responsibility for imparting agriculture education, training and research, through 11 colleges spread across the country. It has expertise and network in Ethiopia to disseminate InnovAfrica results beyond the pilot sites and also create wider impact for technology and policy uptake.
  • International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center, South Africa Regional Office (Zimbabwe)
    CIMMYT will be responsible for coordinating WP 3 activities of InnovAfrica. CIMMYT has extensive research and development experience in sustainable agricultural intensification (SAI) in Eastern and Southern Africa and will use its extensive networks in mobilizing effective partnerships for implementation of the Action. CIMMYT will support farmer led activities and linkages to various key stakeholders on each target site thereby contributing to accelerated upscaling of SAI technologies in the region.
  • Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (Kenya)
    KALRO is the apex body for agricultural and livestock research in Kenya. Its’ outreach department is responsible for technology dissemination and link with the extension agencies in every county. Under KALRO, over 24 research stations functioning in different AEZs in the country targeting different smallholder groups. KALRO also links at the same time with international CGIAR centres in Nairobi, NGOs, agri-business sector, other users along the value chain and Universities. KALRO will use this wide network to effectively disseminate InnovAfrica results at a very minimum cost that can create a huge impact on smallholders and other end users.
  • Kenya National Farmers' Federation (Kenya),
    Modern Dairy Farmers' Cooperative (Rwanda),
    Soils Food and Healthy Communities Organization (Malawi)
    These SMEs have extensive networks with smallholders, grass root rural women’s organizations, agri-business sector can make a realistic impact in influencing smallholders to uptake InnovAfrica results (SAI systems) that can in the long-term increase farmer incomes, livelihoods and FNS. For e.g., KENAFF a key partner in InnovAfrica in Kenya which has about two million farmers as members and even if InnovAfrica can reach 1-2 % , it would be reaching 0.2 to 0.4 million farmers. Including KENAFF and other SMEs in InnovAfrica was a strategic choice.
  • Knowledge Intelligence Applications GmbH (Germany)
    Knowledge Intelligence Application GmbH (GmbH) is a German SME that focuses on digital solutions for small-holders in Africa and Asia. In the context of sustainable agriculture various functionalities have been developed with farmers in order to receive market information, learn about modern technologies appropriate to their skills, and trace own production cycles. KIAG will provide customized functionalities in closed collaboration with the partners to contribute to the success of InnovAfrica.
    NIBIO will use its experience with MAPs and VKCs (ClimaAdapt) in India and other Asian projects to reach out to farmers, actors, governmental agencies. NIBIO will use it scientific knowledge in natural and social sciences to analyse, educate and publish project results in technical briefs, policy briefs, journal articles, training and workshops.
  • Norwegian University of Life Sciences (Norway)
    NMBU is a public Norwegian university with long-term collaboration with sister universities and institutions in the global South (e.g. 40+ years of collaboration with SUA) and with interdisciplinary development studies competence among others policy, food security, seed systems, gender, innovations and impact assessment. Given this competence, NMBU will be responsible for Agriculture Policies and Institutions (WP5), and will work with the other partners in feeding research findings into the other WPs and well as in disseminating results.
  • Rwanda Agriculture Board (Rwanda)
    RAB is the apex agricultural body in Rwanda and it is responsible for contributing and implementing national policy of agriculture and animal husbandry. Being a partner in InnovAfrica, it can play a key role in further disseminating InnovAfrica results to the relevant local and national scientific and extension agencies, agri-business sector and farmer organizations.
  • Sokoine University of Agriculture (Tanzania)
    SUA is a public agricultural university in Tanzania that educates most of the professionals entering into agricultural positions e.g., extension officers in Tanzania. Participation in InnovAfrica would improve the quality and relevance of SUA’s study programmes by adding value in relation to research results, innovation and networking with partners in other countries. SUA graduates will be one way of disseminating results in addition to ongoing on-farm research and frequent contacts and dialogues with districts authorities and small-scale farmers in the country.
  • Stichting Dienst Landbrouwkundig Onderzoed (the Netherlands)
    Alterra is experienced in the PIP approach highlighting possibilities for soil, nutrient and water improvements contributing to better yields. It does so in a participative approach offering a range of innovative tools. Alterra has long time experiences in implementation of agricultural projects in developing countries, in particular Africa.
  • University of Malawi (Malawi)
    UoM has good network in Malawi with governmental agencies, farmer organisations, private sector, and other actors that could be relevant for dissemination, scaling up promising results from InnovAfrica. UoM, the top university in Malawi, has a good overview of environmental and social-economic situation and can influence science policy linkages.
  • University of Tuscia (Italy)
    Scientist from TU have worked closely with FAO in a number of project in Africa in FNSSA issues. Their networks in Africa through FAO could help in dissemination of InnovAfrica results. TU will bring in their experience to communicate science, policy makers and other actors.