Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Do multi-stakeholder platforms work? : contributions of multi-stakeholder platforms to the performance of research for development interventions
Sartas, Murat - \ 2018
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Cees Leeuwis, co-promotor(en): Marc Schut; P.J.A. Van Asten. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463435079 - 214
Circularity and smallholder systems
Schut, Tom - \ 2018
Do open-pollinated maize varieties perform better than hybrids in agroforestry systems?
Ndoli, Alain ; Baudron, Frédéric ; Sida, Tesfaye Shiferaw ; Schut, Antonius G.T. ; Heerwaarden, J. van; Giller, Ken E. - \ 2018
Experimental Agriculture (2018). - ISSN 0014-4797
A large body of evidence demonstrates the agronomic superiority of maize hybrids over open-pollinated varieties (OPVs) in intensive monoculture. However, comparisons of the performance of hybrids and OPVs in agroforestry systems are scarce. In this study, the performance of four maize hybrids and four OPVs is compared in sole crop and under mature trees. Experiments were conducted on-farm during four seasons in Bugesera, Rwanda and two seasons in Meki, Ethiopia. Two tree species were selected in Bugesera (Grevillea robusta and Senna spectabilis) and one in Meki (Acacia tortilis), and three farms were selected for each tree species, each including two plots with almost identical trees in their centre and two plots without tree. In Bugusera, grain yield was higher for hybrids (2 Mg ha-1) than for OPVs (1.5 Mg ha-1), and the presence of trees reduced the harvest index more in OPVs than in hybrids. In this region, the estimated reduction in grain yield due to the presence of trees was 0.9 and 1.1 Mg ha-1 in hybrids and OPVs, respectively, while estimated reduction in biomass was 1.5 and 1.7 Mg ha-1, respectively. In Meki, the grain yield of OPVs (2.08 Mg ha-1) and hybrids (2.04 Mg ha-1) did not differ and the presence of trees reduced their grain yields in the same manner. Our results showed that hybrids yielded more than OPVs under G. robusta and S. spectabilis in Bugesera but performed equally well under A. tortilis in Meki. We conclude that agroforestry farmers could benefit from growing hybrids in the equatorial savannahs of Rwanda, but that the choice between hybrid and OPV in equatorial savannahs of Ethiopia can simply be based on other factors such as seed costs and availability.
Innovation Platforms : Synopsis of Innovation Platforms in Agricultural Research and Development
Schut, M. ; Klerkx, L.W.A. ; Kamanda, Josey ; Sartas, M. ; Leeuwis, C. - \ 2018
In: Reference Module in Food Science Elsevier - 6 p.
Multi-stakeholder processes; - Science for impact; - Participatory action research; - Agricultural innovation systems; - Scaling of innovations; - Empowerment and inclusive development; - Wicked problems; - Public private partnerships; - Multi-stakeholder platform; - Learning alliances
Innovation platforms are fast becoming part of the mantra of agricultural research and development projects and programs. Their basic tenet is that stakeholders depend on one another to achieve agricultural development outcomes, and hence need a space where they can learn, negotiate, and coordinate to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities through a facilitated innovation process. However, research and development funding and implementation agencies need to think critically about when, how, and in what form innovation platforms can contribute meaningfully to agricultural development outcomes. As the implementation of innovation platforms can consume significant human and financial resources, research and development donors will require evidence on their results and impact. This requires investments in structured Monitoring Evaluation and Learning, which is missing in many innovation platform initiatives. To reach target populations beyond the original scope of the platform and to enable scaling, innovation platforms should be firmly embedded in existing agricultural innovation and extension systems. Furthermore, the innovation platform approach must be complemented by other interventions that - together - aim at facilitating structural and wide-spread changes and impact towards sustainable food security.
Digital platforms for smallholder credit access : The mediation of trust for cooperation in maize value chain financing
Agyekumhene, Christopher ; Vries, Jasper R. de; Paassen, Annemarie van; Macnaghten, Philip ; Schut, Marc ; Bregt, Arnold - \ 2018
NJAS Wageningen Journal of Life Sciences (2018). - ISSN 1573-5214
Agriculture finance - Digital agriculture - Ghana - ICT - Networks - Trust

Maize production is of critical importance to smallholder farmers in Ghana. Various factors limit the productivity of smallholder maize farming systems undergirded by the lack of capital for critical investments both at the farm and at national policy levels. Using a value chain approach, this diagnostic study explains how a complex configuration of actor interaction within an institutionally and agro-ecologically challenged value chain leads to the enduring absence of maize farming credit support. We find a cycle of credit rationing resulting from value chain challenges such as agro-ecological uncertainties, inadequate GAPs training, weak farmer groups and market insecurity. This condition is sustained by an interplay between mistrust, insufficient information across the value chain and inadequate control strategies in the maize credit system. We argue that Digital Platforms (DPs) show potential to help overcome some information and communication gaps and related uncertainties that impede traditional value chain credit arrangements. This is promising in terms of aiding awareness and coordinated responsiveness to agro-ecological farm conditions and the development of farming records databases. Thus, DPs could generate new networks and forms of cooperation in the maize value chain in this regard. As a tool for mediating trust in value chain credit cooperation, strategic use of these DP contributions could help initiate an entry point for recalibration of trust perceptions. Significant considerations and improvements are however needed to harness DPs effectively in mediating trust for maize credit provision, not least being farmer digital inclusion in DP implementation, effective intermediation and network governance arrangements and digital contributions towards cost-effective agro-ecological controls in the erratic maize farming context. This approach to trust building should therefore not be viewed as a quick fix but as a process of trial and error, and learning by doing.

Xanthomonas Wilt of Banana (BXW) in Central Africa : Opportunities, challenges, and pathways for citizen science and ICT-based control and prevention strategies
McCampbell, Mariette ; Schut, Marc ; Bergh, Inge Van den; Schagen, Boudy van; Vanlauwe, Bernard ; Blomme, Guy ; Gaidashova, Svetlana ; Njukwe, Emmanuel ; Leeuwis, Cees - \ 2018
NJAS Wageningen Journal of Life Sciences (2018). - ISSN 1573-5214
Agricultural transformation - Banana wilt disease - Digital innovation - Environmental monitoring - ICT4Ag - Systems analysis
Xanthomonas Wilt of Banana (BXW) is a complex problem in the African Great Lakes Region that is affecting the livelihoods of millions of smallholder farmers. Since the first disease reports from Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2001, BXW has been studied widely. The majority of these studies focus on the technological or biophysical dimensions, while aspects and influence of socio-cultural, economic and institutional dimensions only recently started to gain attention. This paper provides an in-depth analysis of the broader BXW problem using a systems perspective, with the aim to add to the understanding about reasons for poor uptake of appropriate disease management practices, and limited ability to prevent rather than control BXW in the region. We comprehensively describe and analyse the various problem dimensions, and determine relations with data, information, knowledge, and connectivity. Building on this, the paper explores and discusses entry-points for the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and citizen science tools to better address BXW in banana production systems.
Institutional perspectives of climate-smart agriculture : A systematic literature review
Totin, Edmond ; Segnon, Alcade C. ; Schut, Marc ; Affognon, Hippolyte ; Zougmoré, Robert B. ; Rosenstock, Todd ; Thornton, Philip K. - \ 2018
Sustainability 10 (2018)6. - ISSN 2071-1050
Adaptation - Climate-smart agriculture - Institutions - Mitigation - Systematic review

Climate-smart agriculture (CSA) is increasingly seen as a promising approach to feed the growing world population under climate change. The review explored how institutional perspectives are reflected in the CSA literature. In total, 137 publications were analyzed using institutional analysis framework, of which 55.5% make specific reference to institutional dimensions. While the CSA concept encompasses three pillars (productivity, adaptation, and mitigation), the literature has hardly addressed them in an integrated way. The development status of study sites also seems to influence which pillars are promoted. Mitigation was predominantly addressed in high-income countries, while productivity and adaptation were priorities for middle and low-income countries. Interest in institutional aspects has been gradual in the CSA literature. It has largely focused on knowledge infrastructure, market structure, and hard institutional aspects. There has been less attention to understand whether investments in physical infrastructure and actors' interaction, or how historical, political, and social context may influence the uptake of CSA options. Rethinking the approach to promoting CSA technologies by integrating technology packages and institutional enabling factors can provide potential opportunities for effective scaling of CSA options.

Innovation intermediation in a digital age : Comparing public and private new-ICT platforms for agricultural extension in Ghana
Munthali, Nyamwaya ; Leeuwis, Cees ; Paassen, Annemarie van; Lie, Rico ; Asare, Richard ; Lammeren, Ron van; Schut, Marc - \ 2018
NJAS Wageningen Journal of Life Sciences (2018). - ISSN 1573-5214
Agricultural extension - ICT4Ag - ICT4D - Information Communication Technology - Innovation intermediation
Agricultural extension in sub-Saharan Africa has often been criticised for its focus on linear knowledge transfer, and limited attention to systemic approaches to service delivery. Currently, the region is experiencing a new-ICT revolution and there are high expectations of new-ICTs to enhance interaction and information exchange in extension service delivery. Using an innovation systems perspective, we distinguish the roles demand-articulation, matching demand and supply, and innovation process management for innovation-intermediaries. The study explores literature on how new-ICT may support these roles, with specific interest in the possibilities of environmental monitoring and new forms of organisation enabled by enhanced connectivity. In order to contribute to the understanding of this area, the paper reports on a comparative study of two new-ICT platforms embedded in Ghanaian public and private extension organisations respectively. We assess the roles that these platforms (aim to) support, and document achievements and constraints based on interviews with extension staff and farmers. The findings indicate that while both platforms aim to support innovation-intermediation roles the focus areas and level of detail differ due to diverging organisational rationales to service delivery. In addition, we see that new-ICTs’ potential to support innovation-intermediation roles is far from realised. This is not due to (new) ICTs lacking the capacity to link people in new ways and make information accessible, but due to the wider social, organisational and institutional factors that define the realisation of their potential. Therefore, more conventional modes of interaction around production advice and also credit provision continue to be dominant and better adapted to the situation. However, beyond the two platforms that were developed specifically by and for the extension organisations, there were indications that more informal and self-organised new-ICT initiatives can transform and enhance interaction patterns in innovations systems to achieve collective goals through standard virtual platforms such as WhatsApp and Telegram.
Effects of multi-stakeholder platforms on multi-stakeholder innovation networks : Implications for research for development interventions targeting innovations at scale
Sartas, Murat ; Schut, Marc ; Hermans, Frans ; Asten, Piet van; Leeuwis, Cees - \ 2018
PLoS One 13 (2018)6. - ISSN 1932-6203

Multi-stakeholder platforms (MSPs) have been playing an increasing role in interventions aiming to generate and scale innovations in agricultural systems. However, the contribution of MSPs in achieving innovations and scaling has been varied, and many factors have been reported to be important for their performance. This paper aims to provide evidence on the contribution of MSPs to innovation and scaling by focusing on three developing country cases in Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Rwanda. Through social network analysis and logistic models, the paper studies the changes in the characteristics of multi-stakeholder innovation networks targeted by MSPs and identifies factors that play significant roles in triggering these changes. The results demonstrate that MSPs do not necessarily expand and decentralize innovation networks but can lead to contraction and centralization in the initial years of implementation. They show that some of the intended next users of interventions with MSPs–local-level actors–left the innovation networks, whereas the lead organization controlling resource allocation in the MSPs substantially increased its centrality. They also indicate that not all the factors of change in innovation networks are country specific. Initial conditions of innovation networks and funding provided by the MSPs are common factors explaining changes in innovation networks across countries and across different network functions. The study argues that investigating multi-stakeholder innovation network characteristics targeted by the MSP using a network approach in early implementation can contribute to better performance in generating and scaling innovations, and that funding can be an effective implementation tool in developing country contexts.

Opportunities and pitfalls for researchers to contribute to the design of evidence-based agricultural policies : lessons from Uganda
Pali, P.N. ; Schut, M. ; Kibwika, P. ; Wairegi, L. ; Yami, M. ; Asten, P.J.A. van; Manyong, V.M. - \ 2018
International Journal of Agricultural Sustainability 16 (2018)3. - ISSN 1473-5903 - p. 272 - 285.
agricultural service provision - policy development process - stakeholder engagement - Sub-Saharan Africa

Agricultural policies in sub-Saharan Africa have paid insufficient attention to sustainable intensification. In Uganda, agricultural productivity has stagnated with aggregate increases in crop production being attributed to expansion of cultivated land area. To enhance sustainable crop intensification, the Ugandan Government collaborated with stakeholders to develop agricultural policies using an evidence-based approach. Previously, evidence-based decision-making tended to focus on the evidence base rather than evidence and its interactions within the broader policy context. We identify opportunities and pitfalls to strengthen science engagement in agricultural policy design by analysing the types of evidence required, and how it was shared and used during policy development. Qualitative tools captured stakeholders' perspectives of agricultural policies and their status in the policy cycle. Subsequent multi-level studies identified crop growth constraints and quantified yield gaps which were used to compute the economic analyses of policy options that subsequently contributed to sub-national program planning. The study identified a need to generate relevant evidence within a short time 'window' to influence policy design, power influence by different stakeholders and quality of stakeholder interaction. Opportunities for evidence integration surfaced at random phases of policy development due to researchers’ ’embededness’ within co-management and coordination structures.

Innovation platforms in agricultural research development : Ex-ante Appraisal of the Purposes and Conditions Under Which Innovation Platforms can Contribute to Agricultural Development Outcomes
Schut, Marc ; Kamanda, Josey ; Gramzow, Andreas ; Dubois, Thomas ; Stoian, Dietmar ; Andersson, Jens A. ; Dror, Iddo ; Sartas, Murat ; Mur, Remco ; Kassam, Shinan ; Brouwer, Herman ; Devaux, André ; Velasco, Claudio ; Flor, Rica Joy ; Gummert, Martin ; Buizer, Djuna ; Mcdougall, Cynthia ; Davis, Kristin ; Tui, Sabine Homann-Kee ; Lundy, Mark - \ 2018
Experimental Agriculture (2018). - ISSN 0014-4797 - 22 p.
Innovation platforms are fast becoming part of the mantra of agricultural research for development projects and programmes. Their basic tenet is that stakeholders depend on one another to achieve agricultural development outcomes, and hence need a space where they can learn, negotiate and coordinate to overcome challenges and capture opportunities through a facilitated innovation process. Although much has been written on how to implement and facilitate innovation platforms efficiently, few studies support ex-ante appraisal of when and for what purpose innovation platforms provide an appropriate mechanism for achieving development outcomes, and what kinds of human and financial resource investments and enabling environments are required. Without these insights, innovation platforms run the risk of being promoted as a panacea for all problems in the agricultural sector. This study makes clear that not all constraints will require innovation platforms and, if there is a simpler and cheaper alternative, that should be considered first. Based on the review of critical design principles and plausible outcomes of innovation platforms, this study provides a decision support tool for research, development and funding agencies that can enhance more critical thinking about the purposes and conditions under which innovation platforms can contribute to achieving agricultural development outcomes.
Conservation agriculture with trees amplifies negative effects of reduced tillage on maize performance in East Africa
Ndoli, Alain ; Baudron, Frédéric ; Sida, Tesfaye Shiferaw ; Schut, Antonius G.T. ; Heerwaarden, J. van; Giller, Ken E. - \ 2018
Field Crops Research 221 (2018). - ISSN 0378-4290 - p. 238 - 244.
Crop phenology - Equatorial savannah - Maize - Minimum-tillage

Conservation agriculture (CA) is widely promoted in sub-Saharan Africa both in open fields and in agroforestry where the practice is known as ‘conservation agriculture with trees’ (CAWT). Although advantages and disadvantages of CA are well studied under sole cropping, less is known about its impact in agroforestry systems. The performance of open pollinated maize varieties under CA, CAWT, sole maize under conventional tillage (CT) and conventional tillage with trees (CTWT) was compared on-farm in equatorial savannah areas over four consecutive seasons in Rwanda and two seasons in Ethiopia. The tree species considered in the study were mature Grevillea robusta (A. Cunn.) and Senna spectabilis (DC.) in Rwanda and mature Acacia tortilis (Forssk.) in Ethiopia. Both CA and the presence of trees consistently reduced maize emergence, leaf area (LA), plant height, and maize yields. Crop emergence was significantly reduced under CAWT compared with CTWT. Maize emergence rates in CAWT and CTWT were respectively 46.9% and 70.1%, compared with 74.7% and 79.8% in sole maize under CA and CT. Grain yield in CAWT and CTWT were respectively 0.37 t dry matter (DM) ha−1 and 1.18 t DM ha−1 as compared with 1.65 t DM ha−1 and 1.95 t DM ha−1 in CA and CT. We conclude that CAWT strongly reduces crop yield in the equatorial savannah of East Africa. CA is incompatible with agroforestry under the conditions of our study. There is an urgent need for rigorous research to revisit if, when and where CAWT can generate benefits for smallholder farmers.

Assessing yield and fertilizer response in heterogeneous smallholder fields with UAVs and satellites
Schut, Antonius G.T. ; Traore, Pierre C.S. ; Blaes, Xavier ; By, Rolf A. de - \ 2018
Field Crops Research 221 (2018). - ISSN 0378-4290 - p. 98 - 107.
Agriculture - Ground coverage - Smallholder landscapes - Spatial variability - UAV
Agricultural intensification and efficient use and targeting of fertilizer inputs on smallholder farms is key to sustainably improve food security. The objective of this paper is to demonstrate how high-resolution satellite and unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) images can be used to assess the spatial variability of yield, and yield response to fertilizer. The study included 48 and 50 smallholder fields monitored during the 2014 and 2015 cropping seasons south-east of Koutiala (Mali), cropped with the five major crops grown in the area (cotton, maize, sorghum, millet and peanuts). Each field included up to five plots with different fertilizer applications and one plot with farmer practice. Fortnightly, in-situ in each field data were collected synchronous with UAV imaging using a Canon S110 NIR camera. A concurrent series of very high-resolution satellite images was procured and these images were used to mask out trees. For each plot, we calculated vegetation index means, medians and coefficients of variation. Cross-validated general linear models were used to assess the predictability of relative differences in crop yield and yield response to fertilizer, explicitly accounting for the effects of fertility treatments, between-field and within-field variabilities. Differences between fields accounted for a much larger component of variation than differences between fertilization treatments. Vegetation indices from UAV images strongly related to ground cover (R2 = 0.85), light interception (R2 = 0.79) and vegetation indices derived from satellite images (R2 values of about 0.8). Within-plot distributions of UAV-derived vegetation index values were negatively skewed, and within-plot variability of vegetation index values was negatively correlated with yield. Plots on shallow soils with poor growing conditions showed the largest within-plot variability. GLM models including UAV derived estimates of light interception explained up to 78% of the variation in crop yield and 74% of the variation in fertilizer response within a single field. These numbers dropped to about 45% of the variation in yield and about 48% of the variation in fertilizer response when lumping all fields of a given crop, with Q2 values of respectively 22 and 40% respectively when tested with a leave-field-out procedure. This indicates that remotely sensed imagery doesn't fully capture the influence of crop stress and management. Assessment of crop fertilizer responses with vegetation indices therefore needs a reference under similar management. Spatial variability in UAV-derived vegetation index values at the plot scale was significantly related to differences in yields and fertilizer responses. The strong relationships between light interception and ground cover indicate that combining vertical photographs or high-resolution remotely sensed vegetation indices with crop growth models allows to explicitly account for the spatial variability and will improve the accuracy of yield and crop production assessments, especially in heterogeneous smallholder conditions.
Farming with trees: a balancing act in the shade
Ndoli, Alain - \ 2018
Wageningen University. Promotor(en): Ken Giller, co-promotor(en): F. Baudron; Tom Schut. - Wageningen : Wageningen University - ISBN 9789463437196 - 131

The smallholder agriculture sector in East Africa is the dominant economic and social activity for millions of farm households who are often resource-poor, food-insecure and most vulnerable to climate change. In this region, population pressure has led to shorter fallow periods or continuous cropping even on hillslopes causing erosion and leading to reduced soil organic matter content and nutrient mining without replenishment. Consequently, poor agricultural productivity has led to food shortages and these problems are likely to intensify in the region, as the human population is growing faster than in other parts of the world. Agroforestry, a low-input technology, was shown to contribute to the enhancement of food production while ensuring sustainability in sub-Saharan Africa. Agroforestry may improve food security by increasing soil fertility and providing additional income from tree products. Thus, agroforestry is now receiving increasing attention as a sustainable land-management option and some countries in East Africa (e.g. Rwanda) have pledged to restore up to 100% of their agricultural land mainly through agroforestry by the year 2020. Nevertheless, crop yields reduction in agroforestry are frequent due to competition for resources among trees and crops. In recent studies, tree canopy and root pruning were tested to improve light availability and resource use efficiency but studies that tackle crop management and tillage options to optimize crop productivity in the agroforestry systems are scarce.

This thesis aims to assess the importance of agroforestry across Rwanda and its implication on crop productivity and food security of farm households, explore and recommend the maize varieties and tillage options that could minimize tree-crop competition in the equatorial savannah of Rwanda and Ethiopia. The approach combined household survey on the contribution of trees on household income and food security in six agroecologies of Rwanda, experiments on the microclimate and fertility effects of trees on crops in sub-humid region of Rwanda, maize variety testing in agroforestry systems and trials on conservation agriculture with trees in the equatorial savannah of two East African countries: Rwanda (Bugesera site) and Ethiopia (Meki site). The survey in Rwanda found that food security increases with increasing farm size and farmers with more trees tended to be wealthier (e.g. with larger land and more often higher crop and livestock income) and therefore tended to be more food secure in half of the agroecologies. The proportion of household income that came from tree products was the least among sources of income suggesting that most tree products are not sold but kept by farmers for their own use. Yet tree income was important for about 12% of the farmers, contributing more than 20% of their overall income. Households having low food security relied more on income from tree products than those with higher food security status. Therefore, income from tree products can be seen as a ‘safety net’ for the poorest households.

Experiments in the sub-humid environment of Rwanda assessed the effects of mature Alnus acuminata (Kunth) and Markhamia lutea (Seem.) on maize at different distances from tree trunk for four consecutive seasons. Nutrients availability was higher under A. acuminata compared with M. lutea, because of higher litter fall but maize nutrient uptake increased only under A. acuminata 3 m from tree trunk during a wetter season. None of tree species affected water availability for maize in the topsoil. Total solar radiation, photosynthetically active radiation (PAR), and day air temperature were reduced by both tree species. Whereas crops consistently underperformed in M. lutea system, the competitive effect of A. acuminata for light was to some extent compensated by extra N input in the wetter seasons (2015 A and 2015 B) at 3 m but not at 1 m from the tree trunk. In an APSIM modelled scenario under low N fertilization, larger N input from trees could compensate for yield loss caused by reduction in radiation and temperature in about 60% of the seasons. This study suggested that adequate pruning and high leaf litter recycling can reduce the negative effect of shade in low intensity farming systems. The low competition of A. acuminata with crops was also perceived by Rwandan farmers, who ranked this tree species as the least competing among all the other upper story trees grown on-farm in the highlands.

Experiments compared the performance of four maize hybrids and four OPVs was compared in sole crop and under mature Grevillea robusta and Senna spectabilis – in Bugesera, Rwanda or Acacia tortilis – in Meki, Ethiopia. In Bugusera, grain yields of hybrids (2 t ha-1) was significantly better than OPVs (1.5 t ha-1). Further, the presence of trees significantly reduced maize grain yield and total biomass in both hybrids and OPVs in the same manner. However, trees reduced harvest index significantly more in OPVs than in hybrids, suggesting that competition had a greater impact on grain yield of OPVs than on biomass production. In the experiments in Meki, the grain yield of OPVs (2.08 t ha-1) and hybrids (2.04 t ha-1) did not significantly differ and the presence of trees reduced their grain yields in the same manner. We concluded that agroforestry farmers could benefit from growing hybrids in the equatorial savannahs of Rwanda, but not in the equatorial savannahs of Ethiopia. It appears that the relevance of using either hybrids or OPVs in agroforestry systems depends on local conditions and the comparative advantages in seed costs. Experiments in the same regions of Rwanda and Ethiopia were carried out to assess the effect of conservation agriculture with trees (CAWT) on crop productivity as compared to conventional tillage with trees (CTWT) in the equatorial savannah. Crop emergence was significantly reduced under CAWT compared with CTWT. Maize emergence rates in CAWT and CTWT were respectively 46.9% and 70.1%, compared with 74.7% and 79.8% in sole maize under conservation agriculture (CA) and conventional tillage (CT). Grain yield in CAWT and CTWT were respectively 0.37 t dry matter (DM) ha-1 and 1.18 t DM ha-1 as compared with 1.65 t DM ha-1 and 1.95 t DM ha-1 in CA and CT. It was concluded that CAWT likely exacerbates tree-crop competition for water and nutrients and reduce crop yields and was therefore not considered as a viable alternative to CTWT or to CT in the studied systems.

Overall, this study found that mixing trees and crops produced a worthwhile, if somewhat reduced, crop yield, and that on-farm trees can provide substantial income for the poorest households of Rwanda.

Reforming the research policy and impact culture in the CGIAR : Integrating science and systemic capacity development
Leeuwis, Cees ; Klerkx, Laurens ; Schut, Marc - \ 2018
Global Food Security 16 (2018). - ISSN 2211-9124 - p. 17 - 21.
CGIAR reform - Funding policy - Impact assessment - Research policy

This paper argues that the CGIAR -through its CGIAR Research Programmes-is struggling to fulfil its international mandate of conducting strategic research that contributes to agricultural development and global food security. Ongoing reforms have resulted in a situation where the CGIAR is assessed as if it were a development organisation. This leads the CGIAR to raise unrealistic expectations regarding the development impacts of the science conducted, resulting in ever growing distrust between the Centres and the donor community. Moreover, its short-term funding cycle and current mode of safeguarding scientific quality are not conducive to doing strategic and potentially transformative research. The paper proposes changes in the CGIAR impact culture, driven by a shift in policies that govern the everyday implementation and assessment of research. In line with this, we suggest that the best way to combine the international 'science' and 'development' mandates is through scientific capacity development of staff belonging to national research and innovation systems. This simultaneously requires major changes in the time-horizon of donor funding, and in how research programmes are selected and led. One sentence abstract: The CGIAR should not be managed and assessed as a development organisation, and requires a longer-term horizon in its funding and governance arrangements.

Do mature innovation platforms make a difference in agricultural research for development? a meta-analysis of case studies
Schut, Marc ; Cadilhon, Jean-Joseph ; Misiko, Michael ; Dror, Iddo - \ 2018
Experimental Agriculture 54 (2018)1. - ISSN 0014-4797 - p. 96 - 119.
Innovation Platforms (IPs) have become a popular vehicle in agricultural research for development (AR4D). The IP promise is that integrating scientific and local knowledge results in innovations that can have impact at scale. Many studies have uncovered how IPs work in various countries, value chains and themes. The conclusion is clear: IPs generate enthusiasm and can bring together stakeholders to effectively address specific problems and achieve ‘local’ impact. However, few studies focus on ‘mature’ IPs and whether or not these achieve impact at a ‘higher’ scale: address systems trade-offs to guide decision making, focus on integration of multiple commodities, reach a large number of beneficiaries and learn from their failures. This study evaluates the impact of mature IPs in AR4D by analysing the success factors of eight case studies across three continents. Although we found pockets of IP success and impact, these were rarely achieved at scale. We therefore critically question the use of IPs as a technology dissemination and scaling mechanism in AR4D programs that aim to benefit the livelihoods of many farmers in developing countries. Nevertheless, we do find that IPs can fulfil an important role in AR4D. If the IP processes are truly demand-driven, participatory and based on collective investment and action, they have the ability to bring together committed stakeholders, and result in innovations that are technically sound, locally adapted, economically feasible for farmers, and socially, culturally and politically acceptable. Several of our cases show that if these IPs are firmly embedded in other public and private extension mechanisms and networks, they can allow the technologies or other types of innovations to scale out beyond the original IP scope, geographical focus or target audience. We see a need for more rigorous, accurate and continuous measurement of IP performance which can contribute to adaptive management of IPs, better understanding of ‘what works’ in terms of process design and facilitation, as well as to cost-benefit analysis of IPs as compared to other approaches that aim to contribute to agricultural development.
A multi-level and multi-actor approach to risk governance : a conceptual framework to support policy development for Ambrosia weed control
Oude Lansink, Alfons ; Schut, Marc ; Kamanda, Josey ; Klerkx, Laurens - \ 2018
Journal of Risk Research 21 (2018)6. - ISSN 1366-9877 - p. 780 - 799.
Common Ragweed - innovation - multi-scale - participatory policy development - public-private partnerships
Invasive species such as Ambrosia (an annual weed) pose a biosecurity risk whose management depends on the knowledge, attitudes and practices of many stakeholders. It can therefore be considered a complex policy and risk governance problem. Complex policy problems are characterised by high uncertainty, multiple dimensions, interactions across different spatial and policy levels, and the involvement of a multitude of actors and organisations. This paper provides a conceptual framework for analysing the multi-level and multi-actor dimensions of Ambrosia management. Potential and existing public, private and public–private management strategies are identified to address the interests and needs of different actor groups across different levels. We conclude that policies that promote a mix of public and private Ambrosia management strategies may respond better to the needs and interests of different actor groups across different levels than a one-size-fits-all approach. However, multiple policy strategies need to be aligned in order to lead to synergies and spreading coherent messages to the public. Collaboration may enhance the likelihood of biosecurity management and risk governance of Ambrosia being adequately implemented and enforced.
Sustainable intensification: tailoring innovations to end-user context
Taulya, G. ; Attwood, S. ; Descheemaeker, K.K.E. ; Marinus, Wytze ; Braber, H. den; Ocimati, Walter ; Rietveld, A. ; Raineri, J. ; Quiroz, R. ; Remans, R. ; Schut, M. - \ 2017
Strong spatial-temporal patterns in maize yield response to nutrient additions in African smallholder farms
Njoroge, Samuel ; Schut, Tom ; Giller, Ken E. ; Zingore, Shamie - \ 2017
Field Crops Research 214 (2017). - ISSN 0378-4290 - p. 321 - 330.
Nutrient omission trials - Relative yield - Soil fertility variability - Sub-Saharan africa

Large variability in crop responses to macronutrient application at various spatial scales present challenges for developing effective fertilizer recommendations for crop production in smallholder farming systems of sub-Saharan Africa. We assessed maize yield responses to nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) application and evaluated relationships between crop responses to N, P and K application and soil analysis data. Nutrient omission trials were conducted on 23 farms located in Sidindi, Western Kenya, selected to be representative of the main soil and management factors in maize based systems in Siaya County. Treatments included a control and PK, NK, NP and NPK applications. The trials ran for six consecutive cropping seasons, without changing treatments or plot location, covering the period 2013–2015. Strong spatial-temporal patterns in maize yield responses to N, P and K applications were observed. Average maize yields in the control, PK, NK, NP and NPK treatments were 2.8, 3.2, 5.1, 5.1 and 5.5 t ha−1 at 88% dry matter respectively in the first cropping season, and 1.1, 1.4, 2.9, 3.6 and 5.3 t ha−1 at 88% dry matter respectively in the sixth cropping season. In all seasons, variability in maize yield between fields was greatest in the control treatment followed by the NK treatment and least in the NPK treatment. Mean relative yield was 0.6, 0.92 and 0.93 for N, P and K respectively, in the first cropping season, and 0.25, 0.52 and 0.68, respectively, in the sixth cropping season. Six main maize yield response categories were identified that differed in the maize grain yield responses to recursive N, P and K applications. Maize yield responses to N, P and K were not fully accounted for by soil organic matter, soil available P and exchangeable K respectively. Our results indicate that current methods for soil analysis do not adequately predict the response to application of N, P and K fertilizer under the highly variable soil fertility conditions encountered in smallholder farming systems. The strong spatial-temporal patterns observed present major challenges for the development of effective site-specific fertilizer recommendations. Potential avenues for future research and options for more effective intensification strategies are discussed.

Exploring future changes in land use and land condition and the impacts on food, water, climate change and biodiversity : Scenarios for the UNCCD Global Land Outlook
Esch, Stefan van der; Brink, B. ten; Stehfest, Elke ; Bakkenes, Michel ; Sewell, Annelies ; Bouwman, A. ; Meijer, Johan ; Westhoek, Henk ; Berg, Maurits van den; Born, Gert Jan van den; Doelman, Jonathan ; Berkhout, Ezra ; Klein Goldewijk, Kees ; Bouwman, A.F. ; Beusen, Arthur ; Zeist, Willem-Jan van; Stoorvogel, J.J. ; Schut, A.G.T. ; Biemans, H. ; Candel, J.J.L. ; Beek, Rens Van; Tabeau, A.A. ; Meijl, J.C.M. van; Caspari, T.M. ; Egmond, F.M. van; Lynden, G.W.J. van; Mantel, S. - \ 2017
The Hague : PBL: Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency - 116 p.
The pressure on land is growing in many regions of the world, due to the increasing demand for arable crops, meat and dairy products, bio-energy and timber, and is exacerbated by land degradation and climate change. This policy report provides scenario projections for the UNCCD Global Land Outlook, exploring future changes to the use and condition of land and the resulting impacts on food, water, climate change and biodiversity.
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