Agricultural Innovation Thematic Window

3ie has awarded grants for 15 impact evaluations and one formative evalution under the agricultural innovation thematic window. Through this window, we are supporting high-quality policy-relevant evaluations aimed at improving farmer well-being through promotion of innovative technologies, creation of markets, strengthening of value chains and use of effective communication. 

3ie launched the agricultural innovation window in 2013 to support evaluations that contribute toward increasing the stock of rigorous evidence of what works, for whom, why and under what circumstances, particularly in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa.

3ie has launched three calls under this window. The first call was for impact evaluation of interventions in the areas of knowledge transfer, contractual arrangements, technology adoption and soil management. The second call was for an ex-post evaluation of IFAD’s rural development projects in Kenya and Madagascar. The last call under the window was to commission an impact evaluation of integrated soil fertility management programme in Burkina Faso.

This window is a multi-stakeholder collaboration with AGRA, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the UK Department for International Development (DFID) and the International Fund for Agricultural Development.

Listed below are summaries of the on-going impact evaluations funded by 3ie.

3ie-supported impact evaluations

Quasi-experimental Impact Evaluation (ex-post) of IFAD’s rural development projects in Kenya

The study seeks to understand if building capacity and enhancing the organisational, managerial, and enterprising skills of dairy farmers in Kenya led to an increase in their income and welfare. 

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Impact of aggregation centers on smallholder farmer’ market power and incomes in Mali

The aim of this study is to determine if aggregation centres can improve smallholder farmers’ access to market and increase incomes. Findings from the impact evaluation, if favourable, can potentially inform Mali’s national level agricultural policy aimed at addressing input and output market fragmentation.

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Integrated development programmes in sub-Saharan Africa: Does a multi-faceted market-based approach to food crops stimulate food security and agricultural development in the breadbasket of Tanzania?

The study aims to evaluate if a multi-pronged approach using a combination of interventions like development of farmer organisations, improved access to inputs through agro dealer networks, extension, and access to output markets through contracting with processors can stimulate agricultural productivity and ensure food security.

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 An impact assessment of EAMDA's banana initiative to increase technology adoption by smallholder farmers in Kenya

This impact evaluation will test the effectiveness of the interventions in Kirinyaga county, Kenya in increasing the rate of adoption of new technologies. The study also seeks to understand the impact of interventions on agricultural productivity and income of smallholder banana farmers.


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Testing innovative models of extension in Cambodia's PADEE (Project for Agricultural Development and Economic Empowerment) programme

This study examines innovative models of agricultural extension programmes and how these are being delivered to farmers in five provinces of Cambodia. The findings from the study can potentially inform the model of agricultural extension to be adopted in the country.

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Knowledge Heterogeneity: Experimental Evidence on Information Barriers to Oil Seed Adoption in Uganda

The study aims to understand the barriers to technological adoption and assess the impact of extension services on agricultural production, labour supply and household income by conducting a randomised controlled trial in 86 sub-counties of rural Uganda.  


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Does reinforcing agro-dealer network improve access and use of agriculture inputs by farmers in Niger?

This study seeks to examine if enhancing agro-dealers’ capacity to supply agricultural inputs to smallholder farmers and increasing their awareness of improved seeds, fertilisers and other technologies can lead to better farm incomes. The findings will be valuable in informing national-level agricultural policy in Niger, particularly in the efficient management of agricultural inputs.

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Evaluation of the impacts of a soil fertility training programme on farm productivity in the Volta region of Ghana

This study specifically aims to use the scale up of integrated soil fertility management practices in Ghana to evaluate the impact of this integrated intervention on change in awareness, learning, uptake, adoption, productivity, and welfare of farmers.


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Evaluating agricultural information creation and dissemination in western Kenya

This study seeks to investigate the market for local agricultural information in western Kenya, the effectiveness of institutional arrangements that could support the creation of local knowledge, and the impact of obtaining this information on farmers’ knowledge and agricultural practices. 

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Improving food security through the introduction of new seed varieties: which modalities are most cost- effective in promoting use of new seed varieties?

The study aims to evaluate if a combination of approaches aimed at creating awareness can induce adoption of new seed varieties of maize and beans in several districts of Uganda, leading to better yield and income for the farmers.


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The effect of demonstration plots and the warehouse receipt system on integrated soil fertility management adoption, yield and income of smallholder farmers: a study from Malawi’s Anchor Farms

The study aims to understand the efficacy of Integrated soil fertility management (ISFM) technologies in Malawi to increase the agricultural productivity and income of smallholder farmers. The intervention combines ISFM with a series of interventions built around demonstration plots and warehouse receipt system.

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Rural financial intermediation and agricultural investment: Evidence from the rural finance expansion programme, Zambia

The study aims to assess the impact of financial intermediation and availability of loanable funds on the level of agricultural investment and welfare of farmers in the eastern, northern and western provinces of Zambia. 


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Quasi-experimental Impact Evaluation (ex-post) of IFAD’s AD2M project in Madagascar

The study seeks to evaluate the impact of access to newly constructed or rehabilitated irrigation system in western Madagascar. The programme addresses land tenure security, agricultural production techniques and sustainable land and water management practices.

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Impact evaluation of integrated soil fertility management programme in Burkina Faso

This study evaluates the impact of Groupe de Recherche et d’Actions pour le Développement's (GRAD’s) integrated soil fertility management (ISFM) programme in Burkina Faso on agricultural productivity and income and how this differs for male and female farmers.

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 Impact evaluation of the smallholder market-led programme in Swaziland

This study evaluates the Swaziland government’s Smallholder Market-Led Programme (SMLP) initiative and assesses its impacts on poverty, food security, agricultural production and environmental sustainability. 

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3ie-supported formative evaluations

Promoting conservation agriculture techniques, Ghana

The study will assess the role of incentives in encouraging adoption of conservation agriculture practices among smallholder farmers as part of the Ghana Agriculture Sector Investment Programme.

 

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Photo© WFP/Rein Skullerud, ©USAID Kenya, ©Peter Casier, ©IFPRI, ©CIAT, ©Trust for Africas Orphans (TAO), ©Pencils for Kids, Libore, Niger, ©oneVillage Initiative, ©IFPRI, ©ICRISAT, ©Jennifer Hyman, Land O’Lakes, ©Cospeonlus,©Neil-Palmer-(CIAT)

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