Farmers’ Organisations in Africa: Lessons from Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi

Course ID
Ethiopian Economics Association (EEA)
John Thompson

Farmers’ organisations (FOs) are increasingly being asked to play a central role in driving agricultural transformation processes in Sub-Saharan Africa, despite their mixed record of success. This paper draws on findings of a study of the roles, functions and performance of FOs in Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi to suggest some principles and practices for supporting FOs in Africa. With often meagre resources and limited organisational and technical capacities, many FOs need external support to start-up and/or expand their operations. But striking the right balance between reliance on external and internal resources, between accountability and proactive leadership, between adaptive and effective governance and between over- and under-ambition is a challenge for all farmer-led groups. External support therefore needs to be well targeted, sensitive, consistent and, above all, patient if FOs are not to be yet another development disappointment. For this reason, we conclude by outlining some partnership strategies for supporting FOs in four key areas: (1) seed/input provision; (2) extension and education; (3) market access; and (4) advocacy and policy engagement

Corporate Author: Getnet Alemun & Ethiopian Economic Association/Ethiopian Economic Policy Research Institute
Publisher: Ethiopian Economic Association (EEA)
ISBN/ISSN: 978-99944-54-16-3
Primary Descriptors: Institiution – Farmer

Secondary Descriptor: Farmer

Geographic Descriptors: Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi
Cataloge Date: 02/27/2013
Broad Subject heading: Agricultural development – Cattle
Call Number: 330.963 PRO 2010
Serial Key Title: Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on the Ethiopian Economy
Publication catagory: International Conference
Content type: EEA Publication
Volume: III
Publication date: 2013-05-27 23:10:00
Forum or Discussion date: 2013-02-27 15:09:21
Place of publication: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Type of material: Book
Current frequency: Annualy
Author: John Thompson, Amdissa Teshome et al.