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Too much fertilizer, too many brambles
August 5, 2015Expert opinion
Too much fertilizer, too many brambles
Theme: Soil Management

Third article in the IYS 2015 series. Excessive levels of nitrogen in the soil due to artificial fertilizers are degrading natural habitats all over the world. Using less artificial fertilizer and eating less meat will help alleviate the problem – although the effects won’t be seen any time soon. »

Dutch private sector development policy into practice
July 21, 2015Expert opinion
Dutch private sector development policy into practice

In their blog “Improving the business climate in developing countries: a realistic goal or another Holy Grail?” at Ondernemen in Ontwikkelingslanden, Paul Engel and Bruce Byiers (ECDPM) reflect on the role of Dutch policy on entrepreneurship in developing countries. They state that overall the Dutch private sector development policy provides a promising framework for combining »

Nutritions for depleted African soils
June 1, 2015Expert opinion
Nutritions for depleted African soils
Theme: Soil Management

Second article in the IYS 2015 series. Nowhere is soil fertility deteriorating as rapidly as in Africa. The looming catastrophe is attracting increasing attention but the way in which African farmers can best revitalise their land has become the subject of fierce debate. »

Think twice before ploughing
May 11, 2015Expert opinion
Think twice before ploughing
Theme: Soil Management

First article in the IYS 2015 series. Should you dig your garden or plough your fields or not? An increasing number of allotment holders and farmers have stopped tilling. It saves on hard work and soil life stays intact. But it makes things easier for fungi and weeds. »

Building resilience for Palestinian farmers
March 30, 2015Expert opinion
Building resilience for Palestinian farmers

Resilience is probably one of the most fashionable terminologies in today’s humanitarian and developmental debates. According to the OECD Development Assistance Committee, resilience means that states can better withstand environmental, political, economic and social shocks and stresses. It is about the ability of households, communities and nations to absorb and recover from shocks, whilst positively »

Medium-sized, mixed family farms to feed the future: A vision for farming in Africa
March 26, 2015Expert opinion
Medium-sized, mixed family farms to feed the future: A vision for farming in Africa

Agricultural development programmes have too long focused on semi-subsistence smallholders in an effort to achieve food security. This has not contributed to the African green revolution that is sorely needed to feed the future. We have to aim instead for an agricultural sector based on medium-sized, mixed family farms, argues Melle Leenstra, First Secretary for »