Farmer Innovation Fund Impact Evaluation 2012

Agriculture accounts for 85 percent of employment and 46 percent of GDP in Ethiopia. As a result, development in Ethiopia depends on strengthening rural capacity through extension services and through supporting farmer associations and training centers. However, it is difficult for such development to be equal across gender because women farmers have less access to agricultural technology. Given that women account for about 60 percent of agricultural labor in Ethiopia, it is important to understand how and why they differ from men in Ethiopia’s agricultural sector. The Farmer Innovation Fund (FIF) is a component of the Rural Capacity Building Projects (RCBP) which seeks to strengthen the extension system and increase gender equality in extension services. FIF provides funds to farmer groups to implement innovative ideas developed and partially funded by the groups themselves. FIF also plans to decentralize funding from the woreda, or ward, level to the farmer training center level.

To evaluate the effectiveness of FIF, an impact evaluation study was conducted in Amhara and Tigray states, where FIF was rolled out as a randomized intervention. The impact evaluation included three surveys: a baseline, conducted in August-October 2010; a midline, carried out in April 2012; and an endline, administered in June 2013. The data collected from the surveys examined how women-only training programs effect women’s participation in agricultural and extension services and which kind of training package is the most effective in improving women’s economic empowerment. In addition, the impact evaluation studied the effects that participation in training has on intra-household allocation of resources, decision making within households, and domestic violence. Also, variables related to food consumption enabled an analysis of how training programs affect children’s nutrition.

The midline survey covered 2,492 households, a subset of the original sample of 2,675 from the baseline survey. Within each household, surveys were given to men and women. In addition, a separate survey was given to individuals who were a single head of household. Among the original 2,675 households, 869 were assigned as non-FIF households to serve as a pure control group and on the remaining households a simple lottery design was used to randomly assign 958 of the households to the treatment group and 848 households to the control group. Individuals in treatment households received FIF training, while individuals in the control households did not.

Performance of diverse upland rice cultivars in low and high soil fertility conditions in West Africa

Traditional tropical japonica (Oryza sativa) and Oryzaglaberrimacultivars are typically grown in lowinput, subsistence production systems in the uplands of West Africa by resource-poor farmers. In these systems, low soil fertility (LF), which is generally associated with lower organic carbon content, and N and P availability, is one of the major constraints to rice productivity. Thus, cultivars adapted to LF are needed for the food security of farmers, who would otherwise be solely reliant on nutrient inputs to increase productivity. This study evaluated the performance of six diverse cultivars grown in LF and high soil fertility (HF) conditions with supplemental irrigation over two seasons. Average grain yield across all cultivars in LF was 54% of that in HF (156 vs. 340 g m_2). Three improved indicarice cultivars and CG 14 (O. glaberrima) out-yielded MorobeĀ“ reĀ“kan (traditional tropical japonica) and WAB450-IBP-38-HB (progeny from interspecific hybridization of tropical japonica and O. glaberrima) in LF (181 vs. 105 g m_2 on average). The high grain yield in LF was the result of large spikelet number m_2 due to superior tillering ability and high harvest index rather than biomass production. The high-yielding cultivars in LF consistently had lower leaf chlorophyll content and higher specific leaf area during the period from the early vegetative stage through the reproductive stage. Among them, two indicacultivars (B6144F-MR-6-0-0 and IR 55423-01) were also high yielding in HF. The use of improved indicacultivars adapted to LF, but also with input-responsiveness, appears to offer an attractive and economical approach to improving upland rice productivity and widening genetic diversity in this region.

Pilot Analysis of Global Ecosystems (PAGE), Agroecosystems dataset

The Pilot Analysis of Global Ecosystems (PAGE): Agroecosystems was one of four pilot studies undertaken as precursors to the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. The study identifies linkages between crop production systems and environmental services such as food, soil resources, water, biodiversity, and carbon cycling, in the hopes that a better understanding of these linkages might lead to policies that can contribute both to improved food output and to improved ecosystem service provision. Th
e PAGE Agroecosystems report includes a series of 24 maps that provide a detailed spatial perspective on agroecosystems a
nd agroecosystem services. Pilot Analysis of Global Ecosystems (PAGE): Agroecosystems Dataset offers the 9 geospatial datasets used to build these maps.

The datasets are:

PAGE Global Agricultural Extent. The data describe the location and extent of global agriculture and are derived from GLLCCD 1998; USGS EDC1999a.

PAGE Global Agricultural Extent version 2. The data are an update of the original PAGE Global Agricultural Extent, based on version 2 of the Global Land Cover Characteristics Dataset (GLCCD v2.0, USGS/EDC 2000). The methods used to create this dataset were the same as those employed to create the origina
l PAGE Global Agricultural Extent.

Mask of the Global Extent of Agriculture. This dataset displays the global extent of agricultural areas as defined by the PAGE study. The other datasets made available on this site (eg. tree cover, soil carbon, area free of soil constraints) only show values for areas within this agricultural extent.

PAGE Global Agroecosystems. These data characterize agroecosystems, defined as “a biological and natural resource system managed by humans for
the primary purpose of producing food as well as other socially valuable nonfood products and environmental services.”

Percentage Tree Cover within the Extent of Agriculture. This is a raster dataset that shows the proportion of land area within the PAGE agricultural extent that is occupied by “woody vegetation” (mature vegetation whose approximate height is greater than 5 meters).

Carbon Storage in Soils within the PAGE Agricultural Extent. The data give a global estimate of soil organic carbon storage in agricultural lands, calculated by applying Batjes’ (1996 and 2000) soil organic carbon
content values by soil type area share of each 5 x 5 minute of the Digital Soil Map of the World (FAO 1995).

Agriculture Share of Watershed. This dataset depicts agricultural area as a share of total watershed area. The share of each watershed that is agricultural was calculated by applying a weighted percentage to each PAGE agricultural land cover class.

Area Free of Soil Constraints. The data show the proportional area within the PAGE agricultural extent that is free from soil constraints. The area free of soil constraints is based on fertility capability classification (FCC) app
lied to FAO’s Digital Soil Map of the World (1995).

Outline of Land and Water Area. These data are used to provide a boundary for land areas and facilitate the readability of maps.