At a pre-meeting of CGIAR participants for the Share Fair starting tomorrow, it was exciting to learn about the diversity of the CGIAR presence at the Fair.

The participants are representing a number of Centres and Programs including WARDA, ICRAF, WorldFish, IRRI, Bioversity, ICT-KM, CIMMYT, ICARDA, CIAT, IWMI…

The participants are diverse in where they come from too both by birth and location including Syria, Mexico, Malaysia, Colombia, Rome, Philippines,  Benin and more.

The group includes KM specialists, people working on GIS, communciations personell, a web designer, someone working on learning and innovation systems, soemone working on indigenous communities and climate change and more…

The CGIAR participants are also presenting a wide range of interesting and exciting activities, projects and approaches based on knowledge sharing of various types–which we will try to share with you over the course of the Share Fair…so stay tuned.

Rome-based international agencies are jointly organizing a 3-day Knowledge Share Fair to showcase success stories and learn from each others good practices and experience. The open-house event will provide an extensive insight into the agencies’ many efforts and related activities in the field of agricultural development and food security.

The Fair will be a platform for people from different agencies to informally and openly discuss their personal experiences and lessons learned, to build networks and to share knowledge and information using modern web-based communication tools. It is the first time that an event of this nature has been organized by the participating agencies.

The Fair is jointly organised by Bioversity International, the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR), the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP).

More information and the schedule of this innovative event can be found on the Share Fair website at http://www.sharefair.net/

Video-feeds and blogging will make it possible to follow and participate in the event online.

Watch this blog for interesting and informative posts on the event.

After more than one year since the Inception workshop for the ICT-KM Knowledge Sharing Project, many of the 6 KSinR Pilot Projects have carried out and completed their activities and piloting periods within the KSinR project. On Monday 17th November 2008 a Synthesis workshop for the Knowledeg Sharing in Research Project will take place. The aim of the workshop is to bring all the Pilot Projects together to discuss their activities and capture lessons from their piloting activities.

The Workshop will take place over three days (17th, 18th, 19th) on ILRI Campus in Addis ababa, Ethiopia. The workshop will include:

  • Review of project activities, outputs and outcomes–using Rive of Life Activity
  • Evaluation of Knowledge Sharing strategies employed in the research project–through using and revisiting the Impact pathways approach
  • Most Significnat Change exercise
  • Discussions on Communication and outreach of Project knowledge and lessons
  • …and more!

We look forward to some fruitful discussions and exercises and being able to share more information derived from the project through this space and others.

Stay tuned…

On Thursday 13th November David Raitzer from the Centre for International Foresty impact-assessment-workshop-brazil-08Research (CIFOR) will be presenting a session on “Prioritizing Agricultural Research for Development:Experience and Lessons from CGIAR” at the INTERNATIONAL WORKSHOP ON METHODOLOGICAL INNOVATIONS IN IMPACT ASSESSMENT OF
AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH in Brasilia, November 12-14, 2008 at Embrapa Headquarters and Alvorada Brasilia Hotel.

raitzer-session-presentation-highlighted

His session is based on the work being done through the Knowledge sharing in Research Pilot Project he is leading on behalf of the Systemwide consortium on priority assessment which has been trying to use knowledge sharing approaches to compile and share methods of priority assessment from various CGIAR and non-CGIAR groups and their experiences in using them.

The Pilot Project has been working on the following activities and approaches:

* Meetings to discuss method and experiences

* Compiling methods and experiences as chapters of a Compendium

* Virtual forum for reviewing and sharing comments on chapters

* Options for additional online availability of the Compendium content or wider sharing

At the recent Annual Research meeting of the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), the KSinR Project leader- Nadia Manning-Thomas, was asked to develop, together with the Communications Director and Director for Impact, a session on “Creating a Culture of Impact”.

The two hour session started with an introduction about ‘WHY?’ we need to think about impact more systematically within the institute and the changes it may require in the ‘way we do business’. Following on from this was a presentation on the Impact Pathways approach as a framework for planning, tracking and evaluating impact- given by Nadia Manning-Thomas. The presentation introduced the four main stages in the impact pathway:

  1. Developing a logic model to make explicit the goal being worked towards and the causal links to achieving this
  2. Identification of key actors, what relationships and activities they currently have and what is needed for the future. In this case it is also good to further identify those Boundary Partners which a project/program can most realistically work with and influence, and can take project results forward.
  3. Development of key strategies to be undertaken by the Institute/project/program to bring about the necessary changes using project results and outputs. This helps tie the project activities to the final goal.
  4. How to monitor and evaluate all of this

The next part of the session consisted of three ‘stations’ in the conference room which everyone was expected to visit for a 20 minute session. The stations, representing some key strategies or frameworks were:

1. Knowledge Sharing in Research: ideas, experiences, lessons–Nadia Manning-Thomas

2. Uptake Strategy–Joanna Kane-Potaka

3. Outreach strategy designed for a a specific project being proposed–Meredith Giordano

These stations elicited so much discussion that groups were only able to make it to two stations before it was time to return to plenary for a quick discussion, before breaking for lunch, on:

* How to operationalise this at IWMI?

*What strategies can we use at IWMI in our projects?

*How can we do this?

The whole session was very interesting and filled with lively discussion. The overall result was that most people now seem to accept and believe in the fact that we should be doing things differently to achieve imapct and need to learn to think and act differently, making us of new tools and approaches. The big question that then came up was ” How do we do it?”. There is now a need to bring in information, experiences, guidance, training etc to make this a reality at IWMI.

At the recently held “Maxmising the impact of agricultural research in Africa: A workshop on research communication” in Addis in October, a number of ways of capturing, documenting and sharing the workshop were carried out. These are becoming available though a number of different channels–read on for ways to find these resources.

Peter Ballantyne, President of the International Association of Agricultural Information Specialist (IAALD), was not only a participant at the recently held “Maximising the impact of agricultural research in Africa: A Workshop on research communication” but played an active role in documenting the workshop through blog posts as well as blips (small video clips) of interviews with various organisers and participants in the workshop.

You might be interested to see some of the material from the workshop at:

These comprise a series of short blog stories with links to some short video interviews taken by Peter in Addis.
Everything is listed from this page: http://iaald.blogspot.com/2008/10/stories-from-addis-research.html

Additionally, I-Nadia took hundreds of photos to document and share with you what was going on at the workshop and who was there. The photos are available online using the Flickr account of the KS project at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/8764209@N07/sets/72157608287846090/

Furthermore GDN has been updating a few sections on the workshop briefing page on the GDNet website (http://www.gdnet.org/middle.php?oid=1492 ) and added the workshop agenda online with links to all material shared at the workshop (http://www.gdnet.org/middle.php?oid=1564 )

As part of learning about and trying new tools and approaches to communication, as well as wanting to share with others out there about the workshop- some of the organisers and participants will be blogging on the event- “Maximising Impact of Agricultural Research In Africa: A Workshop on Research Communication” which starts today- October 21st- at UN ECA in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The workshop is being organised by IFPRI, WBI, GDN and ICT-KM.

Check out this space for more posts on the event.

Also check out the IAALD blog at http://www.iaald.org/

The IAALD Africa congress will be held in Accra, Ghana in 2009 (13 – 17 July).

People from Africa or working in Africa are particularly encouraged to submit papers and posters, before the end of October please.

More information can be found here:

English: http://www.iaald-africa.org/chapter_conference2009_en.html

Français : http://www.iaald-africa.org/chapter_conference2009_fr.html

DEADLINE EXTENDED TO 31ST OCTOBER 2008 FOR KNOWLEDGE “SHARE FAIR’.

Bioversity International, the CGIAR ICT-KM program, FAO, IFAD and WFP are jointly organizing a 3-day event entitled Knowledge “Share Fair” for Agricultural Development and Food Security to be held at FAO Headquarters on 20 – 22 January 2009.

See the newly launched (but provisional) Knowledge “Share Fair” website

AIMS AND TOPICS

The Share Fair will provide an interactive experience, allowing staff and our Rome-based constituents to:

  • share and learn from each others good practices;
  • experiment with tools and methodologies for knowledge sharing;
  • create linkages and networks for future collaboration between the organizations;
  • develop ideas to support and enhance knowledge sharing within and across our organizations.

CALL FOR PROPOSALS

The purpose of the event is to showcase examples of good knowledge sharing practices in the field of agricultural development and food security. Specifically, we have structured the Fair to allow staff to learn from each other how knowledge sharing practices, methods and tools have enhanced their work and made their project(s) more successful and effective.

The Share Fair will showcase examples of knowledge sharing strategies, policies and operational practices using case studies, anecdotes, and face-to-face events.

We would like you to tell us a story about how you and/or your project dealt with one – or more – of the contexts (see Section 2 and 3 of the Call for Proposals).

Download Call for Proposals

SUBMISSIONS

All projects will be refereed through a peer review process. Potential contributors are strongly encouraged to submit their proposals no later than 31st October, 2008. You can submit your proposals via email to: share-fair@fao.org

Please note that this is a provisional Web page intended to advertise the Call for Proposals of the Knowledge Share Fair prior to the publication of the official Web site

e-Agriculture at the IAALD-AFITA-WCCA World Conference
(24-27 August 2008, Atsugi Japan)

Plenary session, Wednesday, 27 August, 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) will facilitate an e-Agriculture panel to deliberate issues of ICT as enablers in various critical areas of development, as well as the role of Public Private Partnerships (PPP) in support of e-Agriculture.

The session will be an interactive discussion with the audience, with the panel anchored by:
– Alexander Flor, Dean, Faculty of Information and Communication Studies, University of the Philippines Open University;

– Manish Pandey, Deputy Director, Katalyst-Swisscontact;
– Michael Riggs, Information Management Specialist, FAO Regional Office for Asia-Pacific;
– Roxanna Samii, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD);
and Stephen Rudgard, FAO, as the moderator.

The panelists will share knowledge and experiences, and the audience encouraged to contribute on topics such as the use of mobile telephony use in rural areas, with particular reference to ameliorate global soaring food prices, and knowledge brokering services in support of agricultural development, including Communities of Practice and approaches to building capacity.

There will also be a reprise of the issues arising in this year’s PPP online forum and eIndia conference discussion session entitled “Making e-Agriculture Work through Public Private Partnership in Asia”. Experience and lessons in Bangladesh (Katalyst) and West Africa (Tradenet) will be contributed.

Full details of the PPP online forum, and reviews of the two sessions organized by FAO, the Global Knowledge Partnership (GKP), OneWorld South Asia and Katalyst in the e-Agriculture track of India’s largest ICT Event, eIndia 2008 in July 2008, can be found on http://www.e-agriculture.org.

For more information on IAALD-AFITA-WCCA World Conference please see http://iaald-afita-wcca2008.org/

Bioversity International, the CGIAR ICT-KM program, FAO, IFAD and WFP are jointly organizing a 3-day event entitled Knowledge “Share Fair” for Agricultural Development and Food Security to be held at FAO Headquarters on 20 – 22 January 2009.

See the newly launched (but provisional) Knowledge “Share Fair” website

AIMS AND TOPICS

The Share Fair will provide an interactive experience, allowing staff and our Rome-based constituents to:

  • share and learn from each others good practices;
  • experiment with tools and methodologies for knowledge sharing;
  • create linkages and networks for future collaboration between the organizations;
  • develop ideas to support and enhance knowledge sharing within and across our organizations.

CALL FOR PROPOSALS

The purpose of the event is to showcase examples of good knowledge sharing practices in the field of agricultural development and food security. Specifically, we have structured the Fair to allow staff to learn from each other how knowledge sharing practices, methods and tools have enhanced their work and made their project(s) more successful and effective.

The Share Fair will showcase examples of knowledge sharing strategies, policies and operational practices using case studies, anecdotes, and face-to-face events.

We would like you to tell us a story about how you and/or your project dealt with one – or more – of the contexts (see Section 2 and 3 of the Call for Proposals).

Download Call for Proposals

SUBMISSIONS

All projects will be refereed through a peer review process. Potential contributors are strongly encouraged to submit their proposals no later than 15 October, 2008. You can submit your proposals via email to: share-fair@fao.org

Please note that this is a provisional Web page intended to advertise the Call for Proposals of the Knowledge Share Fair prior to the publication of the official Web site

The Knowledge Sharing in Research(KSinR) project has been invited to participate in and provide support to the organisation of a workshop on effective use of research communication entitled: “Maximising the Impact of Agricultural Research in Africa: a workshop on research communication” organised by GDN, ODI, WBI and IFPRI. The workshop will take place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on 21st and 22nd of October 2008.

To find out more:

Rationale and Background
Agricultural development in Africa is regaining attention, particularly in the recent light of food security challenges. The World Bank and other donors, as well as African initiatives such as NEPAD, FARA, AGRA, etc. are investing major resources to stimulate agricultural production across essential food staples and commodities for both agribusinesses and smallholder farmers. Research and technological advancements represent a key to enhanced productivity and are also receiving much attention. In fact, Robert Zoellick of the World Bank recently proposed that funding for the Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research should double in the next five years. However, research by itself does not necessarfily lead to change either in the field or at the policy level. How can this link be strengthened? This workshop will explore in detail how research institutes working in agriculture can maximize the impact of their work through enhanced communication efforts.

The Global Development Network (GDN) has partnered with the World Bank Institute (WBI), African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), Institute of Development Studies (IDS), Bellanet , Busoga Rural Open Source and Development Initiative (BROSDI), Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA), and Centre d’Analyse des Politiques Economiques et Sociales (CAPES), to organize workshops (held in Cairo, Kampala, Johannesburg, and Ouagadougou) to build the capacity of African research institutes and networks to better understand and apply the tools and approaches of knowledge management, thereby strengthening their research communication initiatives. The focus of these events was to share experience and insights on the challenges faced by research institutes in managing the knowledge that they are generating so that they can strengthen their operations and offer better services to their clients.

Given the focus that agricultural research in Africa is getting, the need to communicate that research to the people who need it the most – policymakers and practitioners – is even more critical. The proposed workshop is an opportunity to take a concrete step in this direction.

Workshop Objectives
  • To examine past efforts at partnerships, peer learning and experience sharing and to explore the causes of success and failure.
  • To develop the capacity of staff in improving the impact of the research being produced by their research institutes and universities, and to examine how this has been done by their peers.
  • To facilitate the sharing of knowledge among key research institutes and to discuss ideas on how to strengthen this exchange.
Sponsors and Organizers
Participants

The workshop is designed to accommodate about 35 from major research institutes, universities, and networks in Anglophone Africa focusing on agricultural research and policy analysis.

Selected applicants may qualify for grants to cover travel and other expenses.
The workshop will be in English only.

Program

A detailed program will be drafted shortly. The workshop will be a two-day interactive learning event followed by a day that will comprise a field visit, separate meetings, and other activities.

Application Process

Deadline for application: September 7th, 2008
Download call for participation More
Download Application form More

The application must be completed and sent by email to:
Ronald Kim, Rkim@worldbank.org
Enrique Mendizabal, E.Mendizabal@odi.org.uk
David Spielman, mailto:md.spielman@cgiar.org
Shahira Emara, semara@gdnet.org
Download application form.
(http://www.gdnet.org/pdf2/africa_program/application_form_addis.doc )

David Raitzer, Project Leader of the CIFOR KSinR Pilot Project on “Shared learning to enhance research priority assessment practices” will be presenting the work of his Pilot Project on the ‘CGIAR experience on priority setting’ as a valuable knowledge sharing strategy leading to more effective research and impact.

He will be making his presentation at an International Workshop on “methodological innovations in impact assessment of agricultural research investments” being organised by EMBRAPA at their Headquarters in Brasilia, Brazil on 12-14th November 2008. The next CGIAR IAFP-SPIA meeting is scheduled to be held right before this on 10-11 November 2008 also at EMBRAPA Headquarters in Brasilia, Brazil, an event which David Raitzer is helping to organise and also attending. For more information-see link to CGIAR’s Impact Calendar

The presentation will be made in a 30 minute slot provided to David in a section of the workshop devoted to looking at “Ex-ante impact evaluation and priority setting in agricultural research”:
11:00 -11:30 – Paper G2 – Prioritizing Agricultural Research for Development: Experience and Lessons from the CGIAR – David Raitzer, CIFOR

The presentation by David will be based on the forthcoming CABI-published book entitled “Prioritizing Agricultural Research for Development: Experience and Lessons” being produced from the Knowledge Sharing in Research Pilot project run by CIFOR.

The book, which should be finalized just before the workshop, involves 12 CGIAR IARCs, as well as other partners. This compendium shares experiences and innovations with priority assessment methods in the CGIAR and its partners at various levels, and with respect to a diverse array of research areas. Each chapter presents and appraises one or more methods that have been used to articulate, explore, and assess impact pathways and research priorities in one or more CGIAR centres. Subsequently, each chapter appraises experiences with the methods described, so as to communicate and share strengths and weaknesses encountered for each approach. These chapters are followed by a “synthesis” chapter that draws together real world methodological lessons from the case chapters.

The presentation is aimed at:

  • raising awareness about the topic, the KSinR Pilot Project, and the book
  • giving an overview of the contents of the book
  • facilitating a discussion on the value of sharing knowledge around this topic and the ways it can be best done

We look forward to the results of this presentation, which will also be documented on the KS website (www.ks-cgiar.org) and on this blog…