Food and Agriculture

Concerns about sustainability have acquired center stage in the debate on economic development. Depending on the precise nature of the concern, sustainability issues are typically discussed either at the local or the global level. Yet interrelationships between global, national and local levels help define the problem more accurately and to identify solutions with regard to sustainability. Deliberations about systems for the management of sustainable agriculture in Africa must therefore be informed by the larger and at times cantankerous international debate on sustainability.


The book opens with an overview of the broad trends in donor assistance to the six countries under investigation and an analysis of country performance based on data from the records of governments and donors. Discussions are organized around several topics: 1) the policies donors adopted toward promoting agriculture; 2) how recipients ' perceptions of their development needs and priorities influenced the amount and form of aid given; 3) the context of assistance; 4) how strategic, commercial, and humanitarian constituencies in donor countries influenced the level and content of assistance programs; and 5) the comparative advantage of donors with respect to their ability to provide agricultural or other specific kinds of assistance. The book does not cover livestock and forestry in any detail, although both play an important role in alleviating poverty and in ensuring environmental sustainability. The book ends with an assessment of the donors ' effect on country policies and performance and outlines the study ' s implications for future donor assistance.




Lele, Uma [editor]. 1992. Aid to African agriculture : lessons from two decades of donors' experience. Baltimore, MD : The Johns Hopkins University Press.



In the last few years there has been increasing interest in establishing competitive grants programs in agricultural research in developing countries. In donor funded projects, these programs are often seen as a complement to the ongoing research programs, undertaken through regular long term research funding, but which often pose the risk of being viewed as a panacea, and a substitute for regular long term research funding. Their design and implementation needs to reflect understanding of a complexity of factors needed to make them work effectively. The design of Brazil ' s competitive grants program in agriculture is drawing extensively on international and domestic experience. This paper briefly reviews the recent Brazilian experience, and offers its full operational manual for review, and possible wider adaptation as appropriate in other countries. The competitive system established and implemented by EMBRAPA (Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecu?ria) actively seeks to increase competitiveness, and partnerships among participating institutions. Access to grant funding by the entire national agricultural research system, through the process of a competitive system, will enhance the quality of project proposals, and support the improvement of research results and better linkages of research to felt demands. Through partnerships, the Brazil Agricultural Technology Development Project expects to capitalize on the complementarity of Brazilian researchers with those at the global level, and their corresponding institutions. At the national level, a much better and efficient use of available infrastructure (labs, etc.) should be attained.




Reifschneider, Francisco J.B.; Lele, Uma. 1998. Making competitive grants programs of the national agricultural research systems work : learning from the Brazilian experience. Washington, DC: World Bank.

The approach and the assumptions underlying SG 2000 are of great interest in a continent that has experienced declining per capita incomes for well over two decades, frequent droughts, growing food imports, increased reliance on food aid and at best a mild economic recovery after a decade of attempts at structural adjustment.


Private investment in agricultural biotechnology research by seed companies is increasingly rapidly. The privatization of intellectual property, and the associated emergence of the private sector as the major force in agricultural technology generation, is beginning to have a profound impact on farmers and researchers in industrial and developing countries. The report looks at intellectual property right (IPR) from various perspectives - industry, International Agricultural Research Centers (IARCs), and national systems and universities. It also summarizes that the Bank can assist clients in various ways by : 1) becoming a catalyst for promoting policy research in IPR issues to fill in the gaps in knowledge and need for further research; 2) developing strategies for assisting to strengthen national IPR systems; 3) identifying and removing practical hurdles to implementing effective IPR systems; 4) incorporating IPRs within the scientific and related communities.




Lele, Uma; Lesser, William; Horstkotte-Wesseler, Gesa [editors]. 1999. Intellectual property rights in agriculture : the World Bank's role in assisting borrower and member countries. Environmentally and socially sustainable development; rural development*ESSD Environmentally & Socially Sustainable Development Work in Progress. Washington, D.C. : The World Bank.