Agricultural Innovation in Africa (continued)
December 9, 2014
Genetic Literacy Project
"African countries, by virtue of being latecomers, have had the advantage of using second-generation GM seed. African farmers can take advantage of technological leapfrogging to reap high returns from transgenic crops while reducing the use of chemicals. In 2010, Kenya and Tanzania announced plans to start growing GM cotton in view of the anticipated benefits of second-generation GM cotton. The door is now open for the revolutionary adoption of biotechnology that will extend to other crops as technological familiarity and economic benefits spread."
Novemebr 11, 2014
Better By Half
"An emerging major policy focus for Africa is its increasing capacity to feed itself and become an important player in global food trade. Equally important is the inequality between men and women when it comes to access to land, credit, technology and other agricultural inputs. This is particularly important given the fact that majority of Africa's farmers are women."
May 27, 2014
"Genetically-modified (GM) crops or any other breeding methods on their own cannot solve the challenges related to food quality, access to food, nutrition or stability of food systems. But their role cannot be dismissed for ideological reasons."
May 12, 2014
"ARU was incubated by the Uganda Rural Development and Training Program (URDT), a non-governmental organization (NGO) founded in 1987. It is the first African university dedicated to training women. It is one of the first African universities to be incubated by a rural NGO and show great promise in the potential for growth among local organizations. ARU is one the first universities to focus on rural development and entrepreneurship considering that Africa is largely rural."
May 2, 2014
"Calestous Juma on Being Pro-Africa, Why Africa Needs GM Crops, and How He Came to Be a Cheerleader"
The Huffington Post
By April Zhu and Calestous Juma, Professor of the Practice of International Development; Director, Science, Technology, and Globalization Project; Principal Investigator, Agricultural Innovation in Africa
"In 2012 alone, six African countries elected engineers for presidents; in fact, Africa currently boasts the highest number of presidents with technical backgrounds in the world. Independent African think-tanks like the African Centre for Technology Studies that Juma planted in 1988 — the first of its kind — are generating African perspectives on science, technology, and development. Although the cacophony of global debate surrounding Africa often drowns out the voices of Africans themselves, Juma knows that African leaders and youth can be immunized from outside opinions and interests if they can just be empowered to form their own. As their cheerleader, that is his goal."
August 6, 2013
Africa's ability to sustain its current growth will depend largely on how quickly it will be able to shift from reliance on traditional commodity markets to modern economic structures that focus on technology-driven development. The focus on innovation is emerging as a key theme in the Africa Union's long-term strategy, Agenda 2063.
June 3, 2013
Globe and Mail
"Neglect of agriculture has been a defining feature of Africa's economic policy over the last four decades. The future is more promising. Today Africa has become a major destination of agricultural foreign direct investment."
May 14, 2013
Technology+Policy | Innovation@Work
"Today all African presidents are supported by economic advisors. The time has come for them to complement the work of economic advisors with science, engineering, and innovation advisors. But advisors are not just people who whisper in the ears of heads of state. They are professionals whose work is guided by proper laws, procedures, and staff trained in policy analysis."
February 28, 2013
Global Grand Challenges Summit Blog
"Recent trends in a variety of engineering fields have shown the prospects of pursuing ecologically sound technological leapfrogging. For example, the rapid adoption of mobile phones in African countries demonstrates how connectivity can be increased while reducing the ecological footprint of communication. Similarly, the rapid adoption of genetically engineered crops has shown how agricultural production can be enhanced while reducing the use of harmful agricultural chemicals."
February 26, 2013
Technology+Policy | Innovation@Work
"There are many lessons that Africa can learn from Brazil. The key is that Brazil has had a long record of creating new institutions to address major national challenges. It stands out as a leader in aviation because of having created an aerospace conglomerate, EMBRAER, whose annual revenue stands at about US$5.7 billion. Brazil offers key lessons on how to make Africa's rapidly expanding aerospace industry safer and more reliable."