Friday, July 18th, 2008

The International Water and Sanitation Centre-IRC, is one of the partners in the IWMI lead Wastewater, Agriculture, and Sanitation in Poverty Alleviation (WASPA) project which is using a Learning Alliance approach in the two project sites: Kurunegala, Sri Lanka and Rajshahi, Bangladesh.
IRC has been championing, supporting the use of and learning about Learning Alliances in a number of projects around the world.

Given the common interest in better understanding the use and value of such a knowledge sharing approach as Learning Alliances–IRC and KSinR have linked up and are trying to establish some joint activities around learning and communicating about Learning Alliances.

IRC now features the Knowledge Sharing in Research project on its website–under its WASPA project Learning Alliance theme–see link

Knowledge Sharing in Research section on IRC\'s-Learning Alliance section webpage

Knowledge Sharing in Research section on IRC's-Learning Alliance section webpage

According to Carmen Dasilva, an IRC researcher working on the WASPA project “the KSinR blog also provides some interesting lessons and questions relevant for our own work on multi-stakeholder learning.”

The Knowledge Sharing in Research project has been featured on the website of the Challenge Program of Water and Food (CPWF)–, under the ‘Research’ tab– see KSinR link

Link to \'Knowledge sharing project\' page from CPWF homepage

Link to 'Knowledge sharing project' page from CPWF homepage

\'Knowledge Sharing in Research\' page on CPWF website

'Knowledge Sharing in Research' page on CPWF website

The Knowledge Sharing project-both Phase I and II- have enjoyed great support from the CPWF, which itself adopts many principles and frameworks of knowledge sharing in research.

The CPWF contributes to the KSinR initiative’s Pilot Projects through the work and collaboration of its own projects and relationships–see below:

1. KSinR Pilot Project: Application of KS tools to impact monitoring and project M&E to a community-based fish culture project in Vietnam

Centre: WorldFish
Project Leader: Dr. Natasja Sheriff
Location: Vietnam
CPWF affiliation: CPWF Project No. 35 Community-based fish culture in seasonal flood plains and irrigation systems

2. KSinR Pilot Project: Knowledge Management Harmonizing Research Output in the Northern Uplands of Laos PDR

Project Leader: Dr. Ben Samson
Location: Laos
CPWF affiliation: Some of the results being harmonised, packaged and added to the Rice Knowledge Bank are from CPWF projects including:

1) Inventories of community resources, indigenous knowledge (IRRI-IFAD-CPWF)
2) More effective strategies for rapid dissemination of technologies (IRRI-IFAD-CPWF)
3) Improved capacity of NARES to plan and implement integrative research and development (IRRI-IFAD-CPWF)
4) Improved rice-based cropping systems for uplands for raising farm productivity (IRRI-CPWF-DMC-CIRAD-CIAT)
5) Managing land and water resources of communities in a sustainable manner (IRRI-CPWF)
6) Improved rice varieties and crop and water management practices to raise water productivity (IRRI-CPWF)

3. KSinR Pilot Project: Safe food despite wastewater irrigation: A Knowledge Sharing Approach
Centre: IWMI
Project Leader: Tonya Schuetz
Location: Ghana (West Africa region)
CPWF affiliation: CPWF Project No. 51 The impact of wastewater irrigation on human health and food safety among urban communities in the Volta Basin

4. KSinR Pilot Project: International Farmers Conference
Centre: ICARDA
Project Leader: Dr. Stefania Grando
Location: Syria (with other locations)
CPWF affiliation: Related to work of ICARDA’s Participatory Plant Breeding Program which includes CPWF Project No. 2 Water Productivity Improvement in Eritrea which was involved in the Farmers’ Conference idea and implementation

5. KSinR Pilot Project: Shared Learning to Enhance Research Priority Assessment Practices
Centre: CIFOR
Project Leader: David Raitzer
Location: Global across CGIAR
CPWF affiliation: A chapter in a compendium being developed in this Pilot Project concerns research priority assessment methodology and experience in the CPWF, written by Boru Douthwaite, Ronald Mackay, Sophie Alvarez, J.D.H. Keatinge, Graham Thiele and Jamie Watts (Concordia University, CGIAR Challenge Programme on Water and Food, CIP and Bioversity International)

In sub-Saharan Africa, where wastewater treatment does not keep pace with city growth, the use of polluted water in irrigated vegetable production is very common. This puts urban dwellers at risk as these vegetables are part of the urban fast food. An number of entry points for health risk reduction are important, including safer irrigation practices as well as food safety and hygiene.

As part of their knowledge sharing efforts to improve collaboration and delivery of research results, the IWMI Wastewater KSinR Pilot project has supported a number of Wastewater projects run by IWMI and supported by CPWF in West Africa to develop a number of videos to help spread messages coming out of the research. These include:

1. “Improving Food Safety in Africa-where vegetables are irrigated with polluted water.

This is an awareness and training video for staff of street restaurants.

This video tries to convey 8 basic rules for the food catering sector as identified in two projects carried out by IWMI through funding and support of the CGIAR Challenge Program on Water and Food. These give special attention to contaminated vegetables in the general frame of food safety.

To keep the messages as realistic as possible the video applied the concept of ‘participatory video making’ in close collaboration with the street food catering services sector in Ghana.

This video is in English with French subtitles available.

Handouts with main messages in English and French are available and are to be given out to the audience to whom the video is being shown.

2. “Good farming practices to reduce vegetable contamination. Options test in wastewater-irrigated farms in Ghana”

This is an awareness and training video for extension officers and farmers.

An important entry point for health risk reduction is the farm where safer farming and irrigation practices can reduce the initial crop contamination levels significantly.

This video tries to convey 10 options for farmers as identified and tested in a project of the CGIAR Challenge Program on Water and Food (CPWF), lead by the International Water Management Institute (IWMI)

This video is in English with French subtitles available.

These videos have been used a number of training and other workshops.