Malawi’s agriculture extension system at a crossroads: Two perspectives

If agriculture is the main lifeline for Malawi, then agriculture extension is the blood, the fuel for the engine.  In other words, without a functioning and adequately resourced extension system, agricultural growth has no path forward. In fact, during the extensive consultation process to develop Malawi’s first National Agriculture Policy in 2015, extension services were >> Read more

Op-ed: Is smuggling of maize necessarily bad?

In recent days, MDF troops have been deployed to the northern border to prevent the smuggling of maize into Tanzania and Zambia.  While this action seems a natural response during a year of national food shortage, four factors should give us pause for thought.

Malawi’s First National Agriculture Policy Picks up Momentum

A few months back, in November 2016, the government of Malawi had a good reason to celebrate. Following an intensive collaborative process, a group of stakeholders—led by the Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development (MoAIWD)—developed and launched the country’s first ever Malawi-born National Agriculture Policy (NAP), and it was impressive. With a long list >> Read more

Journal Article: Beyond agriculture versus non-agriculture: Decomposing sectoral growth–poverty linkages

This journal article addresses a key debate regarding Africa’s development, which is often cast as “agriculture versus non-agriculture”, with agriculture’s proponents arguing that agricultural growth is more effective at reducing poverty. This “dual economy” perspective overlooks the heterogeneity within and synergies between these two broad sectors. Recent studies decompose agriculture into subsectors and find that >> Read more

Malawi GHI 2016: Sustaining Progress through a Time of Crisis

The Global Hunger Index (GHI) is a tool designed to comprehensively measure and track hunger globally, regionally, and by country. Each year the GHI is calculated and used to assess progress. By calling attention to the issue, we hope that the GHI will trigger action to reduce hunger in Malawi and around the world. This year’s >> Read more

The Food-Energy-Water Nexus Video

A new video was developed by the Food-Energy-Water Nexus Project in Malawi, a collaboration of Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Hohenheim, Germany, and the International Food Policy Research Institute. Food security, energy, and water constitute basic needs of households. Commonly, interventions of policymakers or other stakeholders which target the necessities of households only focus on >> Read more

New project on agriculture extension in Malawi

IFPRI is starting a new evidence-based policy support project titled: "Assessing and Enhancing the Capacity, Performance and Impact of the Pluralistic Agricultural Extension System in Malawi." The project will analyze the demand for and supply of agricultural extension services in Malawi in order to design and undertake activities that will strengthen the capacity of various service >> Read more

Short-­course: Improving studies in agricultural communities

IFPRI and New York University are undertaking a 3-­day intensive course in basic skills for undertaking evaluations and experiments in agricultural areas. Attendees will come away with the knowledge to plan and  implement their own simple analyses agricultural systems and communities. Content areas include impact evaluation, basic data analysis, as well as an introduction to >> Read more

IFPRI Recruiting Research Analysts

The IFPRI Malawi Strategy Support Program is recruiting several qualified Research Analysts to undertake economic research and writing on agricultural policy issues; to be hired locally through the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA). Successful candidates require an understanding of agriculture and rural development and experience with quantitative research methods, including data collection, management of >> Read more

Training Malawi’s Media on Food Security and Nutrition

The USAID Feed the Future Food Security Policy Innovation Lab (FSP) seeks to promote inclusive agricultural productivity growth, better nutritional outcomes, and strengthened livelihood resilience through enhanced policy environments. On 18-22 April 2016, IFPRI and the University of Pretoria colleagues conducted a training workshop with members of the Malawi food security and nutrition media network >> Read more