A critical review of the follow-the-innovation approach: Stakeholder collaboration and agricultural innovation development

Technological innovations have driven economic development and improvement in living conditions throughout history. However, the majority of smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa have seldom adopted or used science-based technological innovations. Consequently, several scholars have been persistently questioning the effectiveness of intervention models in smallholder agriculture. Following the agricultural innovation systems framework (AIS), this paper reviews a participatory framework known as the ‘Follow the Innovation’ (FTI) approach, which was developed in the research project ‘Economic and Ecological Restructuring of Land and Water Use in Khorezm’ (2001 - 2012) and employed in an ongoing BiomassWeb project ‘Improving food security in Africa through increased system productivity of biomass-based value webs’ (2013 - 2018). The review shows a need for a broader definition of innovation as an outcome of collaborative or collegiate participation of multi-stakeholders processes requiring scientists, extensionists, local communities and other stakeholders to perform five key tasks jointly. Salient implications of this review are highlighted for transdisciplinary research (such as in the BiomassWeb project) aiming at agricultural innovation development in complex environments.

Ekwamu, Adipala
Nampala, Paul
Issue Date:
Jun 30 2016
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Published in:
African Journal of Rural Development (AFJRD), Volume 1, Issue 1
Page range:

 Record created 2017-09-26, last modified 2018-01-23

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