"Can Africa feed Africa" was the theme of the 6th Africa Agriculture Science Week (AASW), July 15th-19th, in Accra, Ghana.
"Africa can feed Africa. Africa should feed Africa. And I believe that Africa will feed Africa,” said Professor Kanayo Nwamze, IFAD President.
aWhere Data Analyst Rhiannan Price described a palatable, growing excitement throughout the week as key stakeholders discussed the various ways African agriculture will support the growing continent.
“By the end of the week, there was a keen awareness of the huge potential for Africa to feed its own population.”
Key topics addressed during the conference included the spread of new agricultural technologies, the movement towards ‘climate-smart’ adaptation, an acknowledgement that females and youth play a critical role in agriculture, and the importance of communication and collaboration across the agricultural value chain.
Communication and collaboration are essential to Africa’s agricultural transformation as part of the 2015 development agenda. This is evidenced by organizations like CGIAR, whose CEO’s keynote speech at AASW urged the formation of partnerships, collaboration across projects and a standardization of practices.
“At aWhere, we believe that collaboration is a vital aspect of agricultural development in Africa,” says CEO Dr. John Corbett. “Through collaboration and greater transparency, efforts can be optimized; ensuring resources and energy are targeted in the right places and at the right time.”
aWhere’s location intelligence platform puts an emphasis on real-time collaboration, allowing users to not only visualize their own project data, but also compare it with data and resources from a variety of projects from the village all the way to the national and international level. Systems like the aWhere Platform are prime examples of advances in tools to foster open communication between various agricultural research and development projects.
The crucial role agriculture plays in development is becoming increasingly clear: promoting agricultural production in Africa will fuel development through the cultivation of a healthy, productive population of determined Africa citizens. Collaboration, the formation of partnerships, and an open flow of knowledge, data and research represent a central part of achieving this future.