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SustUpscaling project started

Effectiveness of Networks in Seed Potato Sector Development in Sub-Saharan Africa
SustUpscaling project started
March 30, 2017 By: F&BKP Office Image: Flickr (by: ILRI)

Nijmegen School of Management, Radboud University has been granted funds by the Food & Business Knowledge Platform (F&BKP) to carry out a pilot study on the role of agro-based clustering in sustainable upscaling in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs).

The SustUpscaling project aims to understand the drivers of sustainable upscaling by Dutch firms in agribusiness in LMICs. The project investigates the impact of firm network characteristics and institutional conditions on sustainable upscaling performance in value chain clusters to understand the role of agro-based clustering in competitiveness.

The project encourages the active participation of private seed breeders and multipliers, farmer cooperatives/growers, local government representatives, NGOs and research institutes. It is piloted in the seed potato sector in Kenya and Ethiopia to:

  1. Measure the sustainable upscaling performance of Dutch firms in the seed potato sector, suggesting adjustments in business models where this performance is below target, and
  2. Identify the priority areas for public support to develop or sustain seed potato networks where they are most needed.

The project will combine both qualitative interviews and quantitative survey.

Project update

Research Fellow Henk Hofstede started the sustainable upscaling project on February 1, 2017. He drafted a survey instrument which was shared for feedback with the project advisors at Agrosystems Research of Wageningen UR and Sustainable Economic Development at the Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) and the two local partners, the National Potato Council of Kenya and Vita Ethiopia.

Data was then collected from seed breeders Agrico, Eunite (Agrico’s partner on the seed sector development project), Stet Holland, Meijer, Europlant and Danespo at the end of February / beginning of March.

Half March, Henk Hofstede commenced his five-week-long data collection in Nairobi, Kenya from government representatives, NGOs, farmer groups, multipliers and processors in four different counties. The data collection in Ethiopia is planned for May.

The report including all processed data will be ready in July and a workshop to discuss the results will be held in The Netherlands with relevant RVO members, advisors and the seed breeders at the beginning of September 2017.

Please visit the website of the SustUpscaling project for more background information, Newsletters and activities.




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