Widespread drought conditions in the Horn of Africa have intensified since the failure of the Oct–Dec 2016 rains. Areas of greatest concern cover much of Somalia, northeast and coastal Kenya, southeast Ethiopia and the Afar region, and South Sudan, which faces a serious food crisis due to protracted insecurity. One focus of the East African-headquartered International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) is to help developing-country livestock communities enhance their resilience in the face of recurring droughts. ILRI belongs to CGIAR—a global research partnership of 15 centres and their partners working yo reduce poverty, enhance food and nutrition security and improve natural resources and ecosystem services.
The experience of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) and partner scientists in 2015–2016 highlights how research and policy analysis guide prioritization of livestock investments and interventions that transform livestock value chains enabling men and women smallholder farmers to improve their lives. However, building on solid research, it is the training of key stakeholders and research support which delivers direct benefits to value chains actors and poor consumers of animal-source foods.
Insurance that pays out when forage coverage drops—known as index-based livestock insurance—is an elegant idea. Andrew Mude, an economist and principal scientist at ILRI, last month was awarded the Norman Borlaug Award for Field Research and Application. The award, a major prize in agricultural research, is given by the World Food Prize Foundation and financed by the Rockefeller Foundation. Tina Rosenberg covers the story in the New York Times.
Andrew Mude, an economist and principal scientist at ILRI, is being presented with the 2016 Norman Borlaug Award for Field Research and Application today, 12 Oct 2016, for his work leading an innovative livestock insurance program that employs satellite data to help protect livestock herding communities in the Horn of Africa from the devastating effects of drought.
Andrew Mude, a principal research scientist at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), in Nairobi, Kenya, was yesterday named the 5th recipient of a prestigious award for his work in providing insurance to livestock herders in East Africa’s drylands through innovative, state-of-the-art technologies.
A new resolution on ‘Combating desertification, land degradation and drought and promoting sustainable pastoralism and rangelands’ was presented and adopted at the second session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA-2) held 23–27 May 2016 at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), in Nairobi, Kenya.
The Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Livestock Systems, led by the University of Florida, is currently organizing a number of stakeholder consultation meetings to identify high-priority needs in the six countries it will cover (Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Ethiopia, Mali, Nepal, Rwanda). ILRI is a close partner in this new initiative and it helped organize the Ethiopia consultation meeting in Feb 2016.