Focus On: Land Matters

Opinion: 5 innovations to tackle property rights

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By Peter Rabley

More than 1 billion people worldwide are estimated to live without secure property rights — partly because of broken systems and failing policies in their countries. Omidyar Network’s Peter Rabley says we shouldn’t settle with this fate, as recent innovations show that things can be done to improve this complex global issue. He highlights five stories of success and explains why now, more than ever, they need to be heard — and used as a model for other countries and communities across the world.


Opinion: Fighting climate change and famine with forests in the Horn of Africa

Aid is important, but it's not enough to fight famine in the Horn of Africa. One Acre Fund Innovation Specialist Ariong Moses explains how reforestation can help.


Opinion: Where were the women at the World Bank Land and Poverty Conference?

The World Bank has articulated its commitment to gender equality — yet women were largely absent from the institution's Land and Poverty Conference. Landesa's Beth Roberts explores.


Q&A: Calls for greater investment of ODA into livestock sectors

The livestock sector plays a significant role in development, but Dr. Jimmy Smith, director general of the International Livestock Research Institute, says this is not reflected in official development assistance, which contributes less than 0.25 percent to livestock. During a visit to Australia, Smith discussed his thoughts with Devex.


How Australia is building agricultural leadership in developing countries

Each year the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research awards the John Dillon Memorial Fellowship for 10 mid-career agricultural researchers and scientists in developing countries, giving them leadership training, with the aim of creating a global group of changemakers on key issues affecting farmers, agriculture and food security. Devex talks to the fellows to learn more about the program and its impact on their research, careers and outlooks.


5 ways forests contribute to development beyond climate change

The role that forests can play in reducing climate change is well known — but they have many other benefits for sustainable development, a new book claims. Devex spoke to the authors to find out more.


Q&A: IFAD's outgoing president on the continuous need of rural transformation

Rural transformation remains a key challenge to achieving the SDGs. During his final week in office, Kanayo Nwanze, outgoing president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development, told Devex about the importance of supporting rural women and smallholder farmers.


PPPs: Planting the seeds of prosperity for Bangladeshi farmers

For around 8 million small-scale eggplant farmers in Bangladesh, a healthy crop can be the difference between a life of prosperity and a life of struggle. Pooling public and private sector resources has helped scientists develop a biotech crop resistant to its most deadly pest — the fruit and shoot borer — giving hope for a more prosperous future. CropLife's Deb Carstoiu explains how in this guest column.


Opinion: Market access isn't enough for smallholder farms

Linking smallholder farms to markets is a priority for many NGOs. Is it enough? Heifer International Scholar-in-Residence Ellen Fitzpatrick explores more sustainable paths for supporting farmers.


Opinion: Addressing the double burden of work for rural women

Global conversations about women’s economic empowerment and unpaid care work exclude some of the women who need it most: rural women farmers. Jemimah Njuki at Canada’s International Development Research Centre offers practical tips to reverse the trend.


4 insights for better youth training in rural sub-Saharan Africa

A recent report by the Mastercard Foundation exposes gaps in African capacity-building strategies and offers suggestions on how to better approach employment trainings to reach more youth in Africa, specifically in rural populations.


Opinion: Need a reason to open up land rights data? Here are 10

Progressive governments are tapping into innovative technologies to document land rights. According Cadasta Foundation CEO Noel Taylor, it's time to make that data public.


Momentum grows to tackle $1 trillion worth of food wasted each year

One-third of all food grown globally is wasted. Devex spoke to experts about new initiatives to tackle post-harvest loss, and the key challenges that remain.


Kenya launches biggest ever insurance payouts for livestock herders

As part of an effort to address drought emergencies in the Horn of Africa, Kenya has provided $2 million to over 12,000 pastoral households under the Kenya Livestock Insurance Program.


How M&E data can hide development impact

A new study has found a dramatic disconnect between official reporting and the actual impact of a program to disseminate conservation agriculture practices. Author Brendan Brown, a PhD student from the University of Adelaide, is urging NGOs to add more nuance to their impact monitoring strategies.


Persistent digital divide hampers cocoa sector

Mobile connectivity in Africa has widely expanded with the introduction of 4G networks and wireless internet in many major cities. But many rural areas still lack access, and there is no sign of the private sector deploying soon. Cocoa farmers and their crops are among those deeply affected in Ghana.


What bean to bar strategies improve the lives of cocoa farmers?

Devex speaks to a range of experts about efforts from the chocolate industry to raise the bar for cocoa farmers.


Development talk at the Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society annual conference

The Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society's annual conference brought global experts in agriculture, horticulture and food security to Brisbane last week to discuss the state of play for the sector in the current politically charged world. Climate, Trump and Brexit were common points of discussion and Devex caught up with a number of speakers to discuss topics impacting the development sector.


Australian aid program looking for innovative water solution

Calling all Doc Browns: Australia's aid program wants you to solve water shortage problems facing a world with climate change and a growing population. And the reward is $1.5 million.


4 takeaways from 'Recurring Storms: Food Insecurity, Political Instability and Conflict'

A new report, "Recurring Storms: Food Insecurity, Political Instability, and Conflict," looks at the different levers that push societies into a state of crisis by highlighting food insecurity and its connection to political instability. Here are four key expert takeaways from the report's launch in Washington, D.C.


Gates, Mastercard launch new platform for smallholder farmers

Digital technology has long been touted as the key to helping smallholder farmers overcome barriers that have kept them trapped in poverty, but initial innovations did not always deliver on this promise. Building on past lessons, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Mastercard have launched 2Kuze, a pilot program that connects farmers in Kenya directly to buyers, who buy and then collect their product without the services of middlemen who can cut into a farmer's profit.


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