Land Husbandry, Water Harvesting and Hillside Irrigation Project Impact Evaluation 2016

Agriculture is a major engine of the Rwandan economy and remains a priority sector in the Government of Rwanda’s goals of reducing poverty and achieving food security through commercialized agriculture. Sustainable improvements to agricultural productivity is the only way to achieve this target, calling for investments in participatory land management, water harvesting and intensified irrigation of the hillsides. The Land Husbandry, Water Harvesting and Hillside Irrigation (LWH) project has been working to meet these goals.

Evaluating the overall impact of LWH is important to allow Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRIs) to effectively plan for its future activities. LWH covers a relatively small area of 30,250 ha, eventually affecting approximately 20 watersheds. From the perspective of MINAGRI, LWH can be seen as a pilot program for comprehensive agricultural overhaul. LWH includes major infrastructure investments such as hillside terracing, irrigation dams, and post-harvest storage. The project aims to operationalize MINAGRIs strategy to encourage mono cropping of cash crops, as opposed to the traditional system of inter-cropping for household consumption.

LWH has been rolled out in three phases: implementation in the four Phase 1A sites began in 2010, in the three Phase 1B sites in 2012, and in the Phase 1C sites in late 2013.

There have been five surveys for this project including baselines and four follow-ups. There were two sample groups: 1B and 1C. For the 1B sample group, the baseline was conducted in 2012, and follow-up surveys in 2013, 2014, and 2016. For the 1C sample, the baseline was implemented in 2014, and a follow-up in 2016.

The data file documented here is from the fourth follow-up survey.

The datasets from the baseline, the first, the second, and the third follow-up surveys are also published in the Microdata Library with the following study IDs:
1) The baseline, the first and the second follow-up surveys: RWA_2012-2016_LWHIE-BL-F2_v01_M
2) The third follow-up survey: RWA_2014_LWHIE-F3_v01_M

Land Husbandry, Water Harvesting and Hillside Irrigation Project Impact Evaluation 2012-2016

Agriculture is a major engine of the Rwandan economy and remains a priority sector in the Government of Rwanda’s goals of reducing poverty and achieving food security through commercialized agriculture. Sustainable improvements to agricultural productivity is the only way to achieve this target, calling for investments in participatory land management, water harvesting and intensified irrigation of the hillsides. The Land Husbandry, Water Harvesting and Hillside Irrigation (LWH) project has been working to meet these goals.

Evaluating the overall impact of LWH is important to allow Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRIs) to effectively plan for its future activities. LWH covers a relatively small area of 30,250 ha, eventually affecting approximately 20 watersheds. From the perspective of MINAGRI, LWH can be seen as a pilot program for comprehensive agricultural overhaul. LWH includes major infrastructure investments such as hillside terracing, irrigation dams, and post-harvest storage. The project aims to operationalize MINAGRIs strategy to encourage mono cropping of cash crops, as opposed to the traditional system of inter-cropping for household consumption.

LWH has been rolled out in three phases: implementation in the four Phase 1A sites began in 2010, in the three Phase 1B sites in 2012, and in the Phase 1C sites in late 2013.

There have been five surveys for this project including baselines and four follow-ups. There were two sample groups: 1B and 1C. For the 1B sample group, the baseline was conducted in 2012, and follow-up surveys in 2013, 2014, and 2016. For the 1C sample, the baseline was implemented in 2014, and a follow-up in 2016.

The data files documented here are from the baseline, the first follow-up, and the second follow-up surveys.

The datasets from the third and the fourth follow-up surveys are also published in the Microdata Library with the following study IDs:
1) The third follow-up: RWA_2014_LWHIE-F3_v01_M
2) The fourth follow-up: RWA_2016_LWHIE-F4_v01_M

Replication Data for: Costs and benefits of climate-smart agriculture: The case of the Dry Corridor in Guatemala

Central American countries, particularly Guatemala, are experiencing extreme climate events which are disproportionately affecting agriculture and subsequently rural livelihoods. Governments are taking action to address climatic threats, but they need tools to assess the impact of policies and interventions aiming to decrease the impacts of climate change on agriculture. This research, conducted with national policy makers and climate change and agriculture stakeholders in Guatemala, provides a comparative analysis of eight climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices and technologies associated with the smallholder maize-beans production system in the Dry Corridor. The practices were identified as high-interest for investment by national stakeholders. CSA practices and technologies aim to improve food security, resilience, and low emissions development, where possible and appropriate. The paper assesses the cost-benefit profile of the introduction of CSA options into farm production systems. Indicators related to profitability and valuation of environmental and social externalities are used to assess options. Probabilistic cost-benefit analysis (CBA) is used to address field variability and high uncertainty around parameter values. All practices except one were profitable over their lifecycle, with some practices, expected to be ideal for drought prone areas, presenting a higher risk for adoption. The results were discussed with national stakeholders who established best-bet CSA investment portfolios. This paper argues that a thorough understanding of the costs and benefits of potential CSA options is needed to channel investments effectively and efficiently towards both short- and long-term interventions and should be coupled with broader assessment of trade-offs between CSA outcomes.

Mali Household Surveys for Agricultural Biodiversity Assessment

To identify and quantify the number of all plant and animal species (domesticated and wild) and within each species, the number of types/varieties/breeds at the household-level that are: (a) grown on farm and home garden, or collected from the wild; (b) consumed as part of the diet; and (c) purchased and sold in the study sites. Information was collected for each species on its place of production or collection (farm, home garden, collected in the wild, etc.), the objective for its production or collection (Self-consumption, sale in the market, both), its different uses (food, medicine, animal feed, building material, processing, etc.), seasonality, the number of types, varieties and breeds recognized and used, key characteristics of its seed system (sources of seed, transactions and social relationships), and the water regime associated with its production (rainfed, irrigated, water harvest, etc.). Also data on assets and other socioeconomic indicators were collected.
A household survey was carried out with a representative random sample of 60 households per village in three villages in the region of Sikasso in Mali (part of the Wa, Bobo and Sikasso transect where the CRP Dryland System is working in West Africa). Two of the villages (Fakoro and Kani) were also part of overall baseline survey conducted by ICRISAT. A third village, N’goutjina, was added by Bioversity. The total sample size is 180 households.
The three villages in the Sikasso District of Mali: were: Fakoro (Lat 12°13074, Lon 005°20156); Kani (Lat 12°15011, Lon 005°10827); N’goutjina (Lat 12°17961, Lon 005°28372)

Replication Data for: Costs and benefits of climate-smart agriculture: The case of the Dry Corridor in Guatemala

Central American countries, particularly Guatemala, are experiencing extreme climate events which are disproportionately affecting agriculture and subsequently rural livelihoods. Governments are taking action to address climatic threats, but they need tools to assess the impact of policies and interventions aiming to decrease the impacts of climate change on agriculture. This research, conducted with national policy makers and climate change and agriculture stakeholders in Guatemala, provides a comparative analysis of eight climate-smart agriculture (CSA) practices and technologies associated with the smallholder maize-beans production system in the Dry Corridor. The practices were identified as high-interest for investment by national stakeholders. CSA practices and technologies aim to improve food security, resilience, and low emissions development, where possible and appropriate. The paper assesses the cost-benefit profile of the introduction of CSA options into farm production systems. Indicators related to profitability and valuation of environmental and social externalities are used to assess options. Probabilistic cost-benefit analysis (CBA) is used to address field variability and high uncertainty around parameter values. All practices except one were profitable over their lifecycle, with some practices, expected to be ideal for drought prone areas, presenting a higher risk for adoption. The results were discussed with national stakeholders who established best-bet CSA investment portfolios. This paper argues that a thorough understanding of the costs and benefits of potential CSA options is needed to channel investments effectively and efficiently towards both short- and long-term interventions and should be coupled with broader assessment of trade-offs between CSA outcomes.

Sustainable Intensification of Agricultural Productivity in Semi-Arid-Tropics (SAT) of India – Case studies

Sustainable intensification is a term now much used in discussions around the future of agriculture and food security. Semi-arid tropics have largely remained outside the process of excessive intensification, due to the paucity of water. Rather agricultural intensification was restricted to the smaller fractions of irrigated areas in the vast areas of semi-arid tropics. The present study analyses the sustainability using three different approaches. One, Geospatial analysis, second crop simulation modelling and third an econometric analysis. In Geospatial analysis both spatial and temporal changes in per unit cropped area are captured with more precision and accuracy. Crop simulation models are valuable tools in assessing sustainability of cropping systems. The major components of the model are vegetative and reproductive development, carbon balance, water balance and nitrogen balance. It simulates crop growth and development using a daily time step from sowing to maturity and ultimately predicts yield. In the present study we evaluated eight sustainability indicators, crop yield, water-use efficiency (WUE), the amounts of soil organic carbon (OC) across cycles of the rotation, nitrogen fixing, ‘N’ leaching, Nitrogen-use-efficiency, inorganic ‘N’ in soil at maturity, total ‘N’ uptake at maturity. Sustainability polygons were developed to illustrate the sustainability state of a crop rotations to traditional rotations. To measure sustainability, household survey data collected from designated studies was used to derive indicators of sustainability. A range of sustainability indicators were generated from the survey relating to ecological, economic and social dimensions. The main purpose of this study was to elicit changes across the farming systems and agro-ecological regions and derive conclusions for sustainability across study locations

Mali Focus Group Discussions Data

A series of focus group discussions (FGDs) to elicit the local knowledge about the agricultural and wild biodiversity present in the study areas in order to generate: (a) an inventory (list) of all useful plant, and animal species used by local communities for human food, animal feed, medicine, fuel, housing, farming tools, etc. and their local names; (b) an inventory of all foods consumed; (c) an inventory of species and products bought and sold in markets that people in the village attend. Two FGDs per village in three villages. FGDs were held separately for men and women in order to collect gender disaggregated data
In each of the three villages, two focus group discussions were held separately. One with men and the other with women. Each group will deal with the three aspects for discussion:
Useful biological diversity in the production system; Market diversity; and Dietary diversity. There were between 10-16 participants in each group. Each group tried to include a cross-section of individuals involved in agricultural production or at least collecting useful plants from common lands and the wild, representing different levels of access to land (land owners, local land renters and migrant land renters), different ethnic groups present in the village and different age groups (special emphasis should be placed to include younger farmers). For each group there were two facilitators, one to guide the exercise and the other to document the process (take notes, photographs, etc.). The data were elicited using the four-square methodology explained in the Protocol document.
The three villages survey were in the Sikasso District of Mali: Fakoro (Lat 12°13074, Lon 005°20156); Kani (Lat 12°15011, Lon 005°10827); N’goutjina (Lat 12°17961, Lon 005°28372)

Replication Data for: Distributions, ex situ conservation priorities, and genetic resource potential of crop wild relatives of sweetpotato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam., I. series Batatas)

Crop wild relatives of sweetpotato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam., I. series Batatas) have the potential to contribute to breeding objectives for this important root crop. Uncertainty in regard to species boundaries and their phylogenetic relationships, the limited availability of germplasm with which to perform crosses, and the difficulty of introgression of genes from wild species has constrained their utilization. Here, we compile geographic occurrence data on relevant sweetpotato wild relatives and produce potential distribution models for the species. We then assess the comprehensiveness of ex situ germplasm collections, contextualize these results with research and breeding priorities, and use ecogeographic information to identify species with the potential to contribute desirable agronomic traits. The fourteen species that are considered the closest wild relatives of sweetpotato generally occur from the central United States to Argentina, with richness concentrated in Mesoamerica and in the extreme Southeastern United States. Currently designated species differ among themselves and in comparison to the crop in their adaptations to temperature, precipitation, and edaphic characteristics and most species also show considerable intraspecific variation. With 79% of species identified as high priority for further collecting, we find that these crop genetic resources are highly under-represented in ex situ conservation systems and thus their availability to breeders and researchers is inadequate. We prioritize taxa and specific geographic locations for further collecting in order to improve the completeness of germplasm collections. In concert with enhanced conservation of sweetpotato wild relatives, further taxonomic research, characterization and evaluation of germplasm, and improving the techniques to overcome barriers to introgression with wild species are needed in order to mobilize these genetic resources for crop breeding

Africa RISING Tanzania – IPM of vegetables

The aim of the Africa RISING project in Kongwa and Kiteto Districts, Tanzania is to provide a scientific basis for sustainably intensifying agricultural production in semi-arid areas of central Tanzania. The project activities are falls under 4 thematic areas that address three critical elements of sustainable intensification (SI), i.e. genetic, ecological and socio-economic intensification technologies. The scope of activities being implemented include: packaging of new legume and cereal varieties with over 120% yield advantage, packaging and validation of integrated productivity enhancing technologies for cereals, legumes, legume trees and soil health technologies, food safety primarily to reduce aflatoxin contamination and integration of livestock into the cropping systems. The innovation platform is used to set R4D priority in the action sites. In the 2013-2014 season, we reached out to about 1217 farmers Kongwa and Kiteto districts. In 2014 we plan to reach out to about 1500 new farmers. The project team is comprised of national partners (e.g. ARI-Hombolo, District Agricultural Officers, SUA and UDOM) and CG Partners (CIMMYT and ICRAF) under the leadership of ICRISAT.

Karnataka Focus Group Discussions Data

A series of focus group discussions (FGDs) to elicit the local knowledge about the agricultural and wild biodiversity present in the study areas in order to generate: (a) an inventory (list) of all useful plant, and animal species used by local communities for human food, animal feed, medicine, fuel, housing, farming tools, etc. and their local names; (b) an inventory of all foods consumed; (c) an inventory of species and products bought and sold in markets that people in the village attend. Two FGDs per village in three villages. FGDs were held separately for men and women in order to collect gender disaggregated data.
In each of the three villages, two focus group discussions were held separately. One with men and the other with women. Each group will deal with the three aspects for discussion:
Useful biological diversity in the production system; Market diversity; and Dietary diversity. There were between 10-16 participants in each group. Each group tried to include a cross-section of individuals involved in agricultural production or at least collecting useful plants from common lands and the wild, representing different levels of access to land (land owners, local land renters and migrant land renters), different ethnic groups present in the village and different age groups (special emphasis should be placed to include younger farmers). For each group there were two facilitators, one to guide the exercise and the other to document the process (take notes, photographs, etc.). The data were elicited using the four-square methodology explained in the Protocol document. Three villages in the Bijapur District: Mannur, Nandyal, Balaganur.