Centre for Agricultural Research and Policy (CARP)


Africa’s research capacity is very limited contributing about 1.1% of the world’s research. Recent analytics into the continent’s research though reveals promising developments with a tremendous growth in scientific production estimated at 38.6 percent over a 5-year period from the start of 2012 to the end of 2016. At the same time, the growth in the number of authors is equally high at rate of 43 percent over that period. However, it is not the lack of research but the translation of this research to the relevance of the smallholder farmers and local people either in rural areas and/or in urban and peri-urban areas that is limited. Further, as a continent that is facing several challenges, adaptation research is critical and requires to be strengthened; this will help to translate the knowledge from various countries and researchers into useable form relevant to our smallholder farmers and communities in Africa. The adaptation research that takes into consideration the gender dimension is particularly important in facilitating the realisation of smallholder farmer translation that at the same time promotes equity and equality at household level.

Consequently, this centre is focused on advancing research and research support in Africa and working with a range of stakeholders within the continent and in particular identifying and mapping of technologies for valorization by smallholder farmers and helping in delivering them closer at either subsidized cost and/or free depending on the technology and/or innovation is question. In this process, this centre will serve as a catalyst for last mile technology and innovation adaptation and delivery to the smallholder farmers and/or users that find such innovation and technology relevant. It will largely operate within the principles of partnerships and collaboration that strengthens co-design, co-production and co-learning.

This centre will coordinate AfriFood research agenda and mobilise research funding to support universities, NARIs, communities and Non-Governmental Organisations focused on advancing adaptive research, enhance research through provision of scholarships to students both male and female, and host national and international research fellows and offer internships. The center’s programmes are focused on:

  1. Nationally recognised priority commodity crops.
  2. Natural Resources with a strong focus on Non-Timber Products such as Baobab, Gum Arabica, Apiary.
  3. Climate change adaptation including climate smart agriculture, mitigation and resilience
  4. Digital agriculture and artificial intelligence.
  5. Scholarship programme (Early career female researchers programme, the Totos challenge programme, research mentor’s programme).
  6. Community innovation and research programme (CIREP)-where community groups and/or community based organisations define and lead research relevant to them.
  7. Knowledge translation centres programmes (KNOT).

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