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The PIIP Innovation Approach for Reinforcing Agroforestry Research at the University of Niamey in Niger Aissetou Drame Yaye, Ibrahim Amoukou and Claude.

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Presentation on theme: "The PIIP Innovation Approach for Reinforcing Agroforestry Research at the University of Niamey in Niger Aissetou Drame Yaye, Ibrahim Amoukou and Claude."— Presentation transcript:

1 The PIIP Innovation Approach for Reinforcing Agroforestry Research at the University of Niamey in Niger Aissetou Drame Yaye, Ibrahim Amoukou and Claude Adandedjan

2 Local Participation through Research/Development The Project for Rural Development of Maradi (PDRM) was one of the projects that promoted Research/Development in Niger from The main objective of the project was to increase agricultural production through improvement of seed availability and soil fertility replenishment The Research/Development approach used did not allow for a comprehensive scientific knowledge of the physical and human environment, and of the constraints faced and strategies developed by local populations

3 The Promotion of Farmers’ Initiatives and Innovations (PIIP) In , the PDRAA contracted the Abdou Moumouni University of Niamey (AUM) and the National Agricultural Research Institute (INRAN) as scientific partners to conduct research on testing the validity of some farmers’ local practices on soil fertility and adaptation to climate change.

4 The Inter-University Project (PIC) for Farmers’ Initiatives and Innovations The results obtained attracted the interest of three Belgium Universities: Catholic University of Louvain, the University of Liege and the Agriculture University of Gembloux. The PIC project was developed and Partnership agreement signed in 2002 between the UCL/Belgium and the UAM/Niger under financial support of the Belgium cooperation.

5 The PIIP Approach to Promote Farmers’ Initiatives and Innovations in Niger The main objective of the PIC project was to define and put in place in Niger and Belgium new training methods more adapted to the field. It consisted in developing new approach and methods for joint research and ways of incorporating findings into new pedagogical approaches

6 The PIIP Approach to Promote Farmers’ Initiatives and Innovations in Niger The project was built around Agroforestry practices developed and used by farmers to reduce vulnerability It involved farmers’ full participation at all stages of research activities: identification, planning, execution, monitoring and evaluation

7 The Seven Principles of the PIIP Approach 1.The village centrality 2.Consideration and participation of all social categories 3.Research activities as a process for technical, social and organizational experiences 4.Horizontality in the partnership: no”big”, no “small” 5.All actors engaged with all research activities 6.Research activities should generate concrete outputs and enhance learning for all actors 7.Flexibility in planning and execution

8 The nine stages of the PIIP Approach 1.Building good knowledge of the approach 2.Auto-diagnostic of all social categories 3.Joint elaboration of village action plan 4.Partnership development through signing of multipartite agreements 5.Execution and monitoring of activities 6.Individual and village level evaluation of outputs and methodologies 7.Between villages seminar to share and evaluate activities 8.Concerted capitalization : valorization 9.New Auto diagnostic/planning of activities

9 PIIP Approach to Assist Farmers’ Initiatives and Innovations in Niger The new pedagogical approach was tested through two University programmes : – The Master On “Environmental Protection and Improvement of Agricultural Sahelian Systems”, Abdou Moumouni University, Niamey, Niger – The Master on ‘Development/Environment and Society”, Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium 2002 – 2007: Total of 28 students (1PhD student from Niger registered at UCL + 6 MSC students from UCL, UL, UG + 8 MSC students from UAM and 11 BSC students from UAM ) conducted their these research work at Aguie

10 PIIP Approach to Assist Farmers’ Initiatives and Innovations in Niger Research subject areas included: – Natural resources Management – Improvement of agricultural production – Improvement of animal production – Socio-organizational development – Capacity building for local actors

11 Impacts from the Approach Local populations acquired strong negotiation skills, developed capacities for individual and collective debates and reflections, and established direct relationships with technical partners Empowerment of Women, Youth and Poor people with job creation Inter-Village coalitions and organizations build around common interests such as Rural Wood markets, Apiculture and use of grazing areas.

12 Impacts from the Approach Universities lecturers and students discovered new ways of partnering with local populations Relationships and synergy between Universities and research institutes improved Scientists became aware of the need for agricultural research approaches less focused on scientific rigor but taking into account local actors and the impact on their livelihood. Lots of publications generated Textbook on the methodology entitled” Changing research into an instrument for change”

13 Impact from the Approach Radical change in mindset from development partners: – respect for local actors’ knowledge and skills, – recognition of the comparative advantages of involving Universities and research institutes in development projects – Clear evolution from top down vision to a concerted approach favoring collective decision taking.

14 Main Impact from the Approach Funding obtained from IFAD to consolidate the approach through the execution of two of the recommendations under PPILDA Project: Valorization of local innovations Reinforcement of rural social structures This new PPILDA project aims at building local populations’ capacity for negotiation and organization so as to allow them be true engine for development at the end of the project

15 Conclusion The Aguie experience showed that: 1.Rural development requires building new relationships with local populations 2.Agricultural research should be at the service of farmers and oriented towards the satisfaction of their needs. 3.Agricultural research cannot deal only with technical aspects, without considering the other social, cultural and organizational dimensions.

16 Conclusion This experience of partnership between a development project, the local populations and the Universities was unique in Niger. It created a synergy in the reflection and enhanced the knowledge and skills of all actors to deal with preoccupations that were different but complementary

17 THANK YOU / MERCI


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