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The research will be undertaken by a mulit-national and interdisciplinary consortium formed of three universities (University of Bonn, University of Hohenheim, Technical University Munich), the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) and the African Growth and Development Policy Modeling Consortium (AGRODEP).

Underlying concepts


  • To produce more and more sustainable with less resources and improved technologies
  • To make agriculture and value chains more productive and to improve nutrition
    through new organizational structures


  • To reduce the differences between the actual and potential conditions in the agriculture and food sector
  • To analyze potentials including agro-ecological factors, technologies, capacities, institutional and political contexts

Research question

Which will be the most beneficial investment into innovations for agriculture food system growth and what kind of innovations will that be?

Work packages

1 – Starting point: Mapping information from:

A. FARA, AGRODEP and other African research based sources on challenges & opportunities of innovation in AIC-countries and SSA
B. ZEF‘s long-standing work in Africa
C. GIZ (Deutsche  Gsellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit) information on AIC-countries

2 – Early identification of potentials: Combining information from A, B & C:

→ potentials? complementarities? economics? food security impacts?
→ gaps for beneficial innovations

3 – ”Bottom-up innovations“:

screening & identifying innovations generated by and with farmers with potential of scaling up

4 – Modelling, synthesizing, consultation feed backs with partners

→ Pool of best innovations with the highest investment return
→ Policy analyses on innovation enhancing frameworks