CIMHYT EVALUATION REPORT
EAST AFRICA.OCT 1983-McDermott
CIMMYT East Africa Economics
Grand Project 698-0444
J. K. McDermott
Farming Systems Support Project
University of Florida
CIMMYT EAST AFRICA ECONOMICS
GRANT PROJECT 698-0444
1. This evaluation is being conducted after a scarce 10 months
of operation. Grant was authorized in mid 1982 and personnel were on
board in January of 1983, a normal staffing interval.
2. The grant was made on the basis of a CIMMYT program in East
Africa dating from 1976. The CIMMYT system has been in evolution
since the early 1970"s and the East Africa program has benefitted from
and contributed to the CIMMYT worldwide experience. Some outputs of
the AID grant project have stemmed from the decade of experience
worldwide, but it is virtually impossible to make attribution.
Fo-tumately, it is not necessary.
3. This evaluation has ben based largely on judgements of Host
Country officials, USAID officers and U.S. university contractors, and
on information they supplied. In addition, some documents have also
been studied. Four countries were visited specifically for this
review: Swaziland, Lesotho, Zimbabwe, and Malawi. In addition, an
evaluation of the Zambia bilateral project provided input.
While one person is responsible for the report, Bob Armstrong of
REDSO participated in every interview and was extremely helpful both
in generating insights and judgements and in reacting to tentative
conclusions and recommendations. As provided in the grant agreement,
CIMMYT participated in the evaluation in the persons of Allan Low and
Donald Winkmann, who divided the country visitations. Michael
Collinson and P. Anandajayasekeram spent a day in Nairobi reporting
and explaining the year's work.
B) PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
The .project has four components:
1. Perhaps most visable and resource consuming is the
comprehensive in-country training which covers the complete FSR
process in a series of training sessions over a 15 month period. The
grant called for two of these a year. This training is a mixture of
classroom work and practice, the practice being participation in a
real live ongoing program.
One program is well more than half finished in Zambia and
one has been initiated in Malawi. Tanzania, Kenya, and Sudan, are
viable candidates for the in-country training.
2. The second component is direct assistance which is, to a
large extent, training; but is not in the comprehensive format. A
series of exploratory meetings in most of the nine countries and
consultations on special problems, including research organization,
are other direct assistance activities.
3. The third component is net working which has four
a) Administrator seminar, planned to be recurring once a
year. CIMMYT is contemplating holding one every 15-18 months., because
of the number of meetings the directors attend. One has been held.
b) Technical workshops planned for two a year (or two
per administrator seminar). They are on discrete topics. These are
on substantive problems and bring F9R experts together with
conventional researchers. One on animal traction has been held.
c) The third activity is inter-country visits. CIMMYT
finances travel, but initiative must come from recipients.
d) The Newsletter is the fourth activity. It is
4. The fourth component is institutionalization. Grant
agreement expressed the expectation that little in this area would be
accomplished in two years.
5. IL is not a component in the grant, but the regional
training workshop is highly relevant to the grant. This is a two
session training program for individuals from countries who are not
prepared for comprehensive in-country training. 'At one time this was
held in Nairobi. The 1983 courses were held at the University of
Zimbabwe. This is highly relevant to ArID's needs, and use of grant
funds for this course can easily be justified if other CYMMIT funding
is not adequate.
1. This has been'an exceptionally useful project. It takes
advantage of the considerable capital that CIMMYT has generated in
East Africa. Its design attends to both short-run needs (through
training) and long-run needs through net working. It was a wise
decision to make the grant in the first place, and there is
considerably more evidence to justify extension of the program.
2. In-country training could be judged to be behind schedule,
but in my judgement, such delay is not significant. In-country
training depends on countries getting their situation prepared for
this training. Not all variables are under CIMMYT control. The Malawi
program could have been underway by CIMMYT criteria, but Malawi had to
get its own situation in order.
3. Net working is highly appreciated, especially by the smaller
countries who must depend on external sources for much of their
technology input. One Mission Director volunteered the judgement that
the value of net working alone justified the cost ot the project.
4. Relationship between CIMMYT and the U.S. university contract
teams have been extraordinary. In Swaziland, the Pennsylvania State
University team feels that having access to CIMMYT's system and
experience in East Africa saved.up to a year's time and helped the
team to coalesce. Adaptations have been made to the CIMMYT model, but
the systematic start has been greatly appreciated. Both Zambia and
Malawi have re-orcanized their research system. Both rely on a U.S.
university to help implement the re-organization. In both cases, the
rapport between the FSR leader of the contractor and CIMMYT has been
5. CIMMYT has made substantial contribution to the
re-organization of the Zambia and Malawi research systems. FSR is to
play a significant role in the new organization. The decision to give
FSR this role, and the counsel on how to integrate it ito the system,
resulted from CIMMYT's reputation and credibility. The AID grant makes
possible the comprehensive training essential to adequate performance
of the new organization. We do not know the extent to which CIMMYT's
ability to provide training entered into either of the decisions. It
is clear that the ability to provide the training improves chances for
6. CIMMYT's contribution in institutionalism in the first year
has been substantial, even though none was anticipated. The Zambia
and Malawi re-organizations are classical CIMMYT. The evidence is not
as powerful, but the administrators seminar is also helpful. No one
we talked to gave CIMMYT credit for calling attention to the fact that
research was not quite relevant for the smallscale farmer. This they
recognized. They do give CIMMYT credit for helping them see what to
do about it. The Sawziland director would not allow Penn State
University to do on-farm research until after the administrators
seminarr. We did not establish cause and effect, but the chronology
suggests such a relation.
7. CIMMYT was criticized for the neglect of livestock, its own
lack of agronomists in the program and for not integrating extension
adequately. These have different dimensions.
Agronomy input, perhaps not adequate, is not lacking. There is
agronomic talent locally, and CIMMYT's great contribution is
economics. In Zambia training agronomists from CIMMYT/Mexico were
available as they were in the University of Zimbabwe regional course.
Still, as CIMMYT gives relatively more emphasis on on-farm research,
its need for agronomists becomes more evident. Partly this is because
of the substantive need, but it is also needed to help national
systems agronomists to adjust to FSR.
CIMMYT does not neglect livestock to the degree that not having a
livestock person may indicate. The CIMMYT system can turn up
livestock problem. One of the most serious livestock problems is
fodder and grass fed, both of which are addressed by the CYMMIT
approach. Finally, there was some tendency to look to FSR to solve
problems associated with large scale communal grazing.. That problem
lies outside the farming system being addressed by CMMYT.
8. CIMMYT is fully aware of the need to link extension and
reserach. The system makes a point to keep extension fully informed
and to involve extension. However, the system does not adequately
integrate extension personnel. It is my judgement that the potential
for extension participation is considerably greater and that extension
needs to define its own interest in the process. This problem needs
serious attention, and in the course of CIMMYT program evolution it
will likely be attended. FSSP is also interested and can collaborate.
9. The University of Zimbabwe and Edgerton College are putting
FSR into their farm management academic programs. Discussions during
this evaluation indicated the feasibility of putting FSR into
extension courses which are offered by many Universities.
D, RECOMMENDAT I ONS:
1. Continue the qrant.
The basis for the decision on the current war.nt has bhen
proved correct. There is now more justification for extending the
grant than there was for making it in the first place.
2. Continue the project under current administrative
arrangements. AID-CIMMYT relationships seem to be almost ideal as
currently arranged. Much more information is available now than was
available early in the grant when the alternative of placing the grant
under the FSSP was considered. It now seems clear that almost nothing
would be gained by such action. There is a real risk that much could
be lost through a complication of administration.
3. Provide funding for expansion to enable CIMMYT to put at
least one agronomist in the programm There is jiusti f i cation f or even
more expansion but some stratagizing needs to be done cn the manner in
which it is implemented.
4. Make a commitment to CIMMYT to provide a five-year planning
horizon so that CIMMYT itself has some security of expectation and
can, in turn, give its clients or cooperators some security.
5. Work on integrating extension into the FSR concept. REDSO
has a call on FSSP, which is also interested in this task. Missions
need to make modest investments of the right nature in extension.
Currently, donors are either ignoring extension or are making the
wrong investment. Extension needs a small staff, well trained and
working closely with research to provide technological support and
leadership to field agents. FSR offers an excellent opportunity for
extension and research to strengthen these relations.
6. REDSO and CIMMYT develop a networking strategy that (a)
involves administrators in a seminar meeting yearly and (b) exploits
the commonality of i interest in the region.
7. CIMMYT and FSSP hold a joint seminar involving all FSR
8. CIMMYT review its Newsletter and quarterly reports for the
purpose of establishing an improved record of FSR in East Africa as
well as improving the current state of information.
This evaluation is being done very early in the project history.
The grant was awarded in mid-1982, and personnel provided by the grant
were on board in early 1983. That represents a rather normal start up
time. The cropping season in much of the region starts in the last
quarter of the year, and farming system activity has some relation to
crop cycles even if one-step removed as is CIMMYT. All of this means
that there simply are inadequate data for definitive evaluation.
Principal sources of information have been USAID officers,
expatriate teams, host government officials, and CIMMYT personnel.
Means of collecting information has been the interview. Chances to
observe work and results have been severely limited. Four countries
have been visited specifically for the evaluation--Swaziland, Lesotho,
Malawi and Zimbabwe. A recent evaluation of a bilateral project in
Zambia also provided information. Finally, grantee reports and
documents have provided inputs for this report.
This report has a single author. Given the newness of the
project and the subsequent scarcity of data, it has been necessary to
draw inferences and anticipate results. This carries its own risks.
I have attempted to present evidence and explain rationale at least
for some of these inferences in an attempt to facilitate evaluation of
the evaluation. However, much remains judgmental. If there are
serious challenges from reliable sources, they need to be given
careful considerate ion.
While I am responsible for the report I acknowledge with
gratitude the assistance of Michael Collinson and P. Anandajiayasekeram
of CiMMYT/Nai robi. Also special thanks are due Robert Armstrong of
AID/REDSO/Nairobi who accompanied me on all four country visits and to
Allan Low CIMMYT/Mbabane and Donald Winkelmann, CIMMYT/Mexico, who
divided up country visitation. Not only were they the most pleasant
of travel companions they were stimulating participants in a
Gratitude must also be expressed to government officials, USAID
officers, contractor personnel, and others who supplied much of the
information and insight contained in this report. Their names are
listed in the country reports.
Finally my gratitude is also expressed to the Farming Systems
Support Project, University of Florida, and to others who provided the
opportunity for such an excellent opportunity to study research and
extension activities in this region of Africa.,
II. PROJECT DESCRIPTION
The project has four components: training, direct assistance,
networking, and institutionalization.
A. TrainiDng is handled under two activities.
In-country training is a comprehensive program that runs
through the entire FSR process in a series of training sessions over
an 18-month period. The grant agreement calls for this program in two
countries a year. CIMMYT selects the countries for this training on
the basis of commitment, leadership, and resources, The chief
resource is personnel with training equal to the B.S., and ten is the
minimum. CIMMYT training is designed for the professional level
worker, B.S. or above.
The .ideal type in-country training program covers the
following topics in a series of five to eight sessions: Analysis of
secondary data and informal surveys; formal survey design,
questionnaire design and implementation; analysis of survey,
identification of priorities, screening of known technology for system
compatibility, and technology evaluation; design and establishment of
on-farm trials; monitoring of trials, recording of data, interact ion
with farmer; trial harvesting and recording of data; data analysis,
economic evaluation, and planning of next cycle. This sequence is
modified to fit needs and timing of national programs.. The sequence
is often preceded by an exploratory session to explain the FSR conc::ept
Another type of training is offered at the Un:ivers:i.ty of
Zimbabwe for individuals from countries who do not have enough
personnel for an in-country training program. This training is in two
sessions of three weeks each. The first session is devoted to the
diagnostic components of the FSR sequence, and the second series is on
on-farm research. As originally conceived, the first session was for
economists and the second for agronomists. Currently, however, the
intent is for both groups to do both sessions.
All training is a mixture of study, classroom instruction,
and practical work. An FSR project serves as the laboratory for the
Zimbabwe training. A real live project serves as the laboratory in
in-country programs, and the training session often implements a phase
of the project.
B. ircet Ass.is.t.nce is offered to countries on the basis of
need. It is used heavily for those countries which have a project
with an expatriate team but too few national professionals to justify
an in-country program. It can also be used in response to whatever a
,country needs. It responds to request from ex-patriate teams as well
as from nationals.
In many cases, direct assistance is similar to training,
including an exploratory or an explanatory training exercise. Direct
assistance also includes counsel on reorganizing the research system,
and two countries, Zambia and Malawi, have received this type
C. Networking is handled by four activities.
1. One is the Newsletter which performs the normal function
implied in its title,.
2. A second activity is a recurring seminar of research
administrators for all countries in the region. This will be held
either every 12 or every .18 months for the same participants. There
will be papers, but much of the time is spent in discussing
3. A third activity is a series of technical workshops on
selected topics. Plans are to hold two of these for every one of th
administrator seminars. They are non-recurring. They address a
problem area common to many countries and involve both FSR personnel
and conventional research personnel. One has been hold on animal
traction. This workshop also involves a CIMMYT consultant to
inventory work in the area.
4. The fourth activity is inter-country visitation.
Persons wanting to visit other countries can apply to the CIMMYT
project for travel assistance, CIMMYT does not hold itself
responsible for orgainizing these visits. That is left to personnel.
+o the region. This has been used for both technical and
administrative visits. It is expected that there will be requests as
participants of the animal traction workshop attempt to maintain
contacts made there.
D. Instityutiona.l i..ti n will be a function of all other
activities. The grant agreement anticipated no institutionalization
activity during the first two years. As a matter of fact there have
been several accomplishments which have important institutional
III. GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS
Evolution of FSR
FSR methodologies and management is not a mature area of
competence. The state of the art is evolving, and CIMMYT has been one
of the major contributors to this evolution. Its program started with
a straight forward adoption study made after the introduction of a
practice. In one of these studies it was found that although some 50
percent of the farmers had adopted the practice, some 95 percent of
those for whom the practice was appropriate had adopted it. This led
CIMMYT to a program of analysis before technological innovation and
attempts to identify innovations that would better fit the systems of
farming and thus increase the probability of adoption. FSR in CIMMYT
is lodged in its economics program and is still staffed by economists.
In one phase of the evolution,, the program emphasized surveys. The
current program places a much heavier emphasis on on-farm research
than formerly, but it is related to the survey component such that
they complement one another. The evolution continues. Integration of
extension into the process appears to be a phase not very far into the
CIMIMY1 in. East Africa
It is necessary to have some understanding of what the CIMMYT
program is and what it is that AID is buying in the CIMMYT grant. On
the surface this program is a set of methodologies from rapid
assessment through formal survey to on-farm trials and technologies
tested in specific farming systems. However, the program is deeper
than that, and this ,extra depth adds considerably to the.product AID
is giving its LDC clientele access to,, The extra depth comes from the
perspective CIMMYT has developed. It is capsulated in the way CIMMYT
now describes it program, "on-farm research with a farming system
perspective" (OFR/FSP). The perspective is of considerably more
significance than is the set of methodologies. The perspective lends
orientation to the work, Ain a sense establishing the objective.
Without the perspective, methodologies can be implemented but without
achieving their purpose, and they have in some FSR efforts.
Methodologies become means, and if one has the proper perspective,
there will be alternative means to reach objectives. This is not to
down play methodologies, since it is through methodologies that things
are accomplished, including understanding of the farming system
CIMMYT also offers an excellent knowledge and understanding of
East arid South African research institutions and a continuity :of
program that can be helpful to AID. This has enabled CIMMYT to work
effectively in the area of institutionalization even though the PP
indicated little was to be done the first year or so.
FSR in Context
Since FSR is viewed in so many different ways, it is useful to
set forth my own conceptualization of FSR. That conceptualization
will likely have some influence on interpretations and conclusions.
1. Farming Systems Research addresses a segment of the total
technology innovation process.
2. The technology innovation process is a series of activities
that lead from the world's stock of kpowledne,, to common practice in
agricultural production. The activities are here presented in an over
Body of Scientific Tech. Tech, Tech. Dissemi- Dif- Common
Knowledge Research Develop- Testing Adapta- nation fusion Practice
The sequence is oversimplified, chiefly from the fact that there are
loops in the process. Feedback sets the process back from time to
*time, in one degree or another. It can even start the process all
3. In many L.DC'"s. f*or a variety of reasons, research stops part
way through the testing activity (or phase), but extension-does not
start until the dissemination activity (or phase). (Research stops
too soon; extension starts too late).
4. This break, in the process seriously hampers technology
innovation in agriculture. Some very powerful innovations may be able
to jump the gap or even bypass extension. External forces can bridge
the gap. These events, however, do not restore the integrity of the
technology innovation process, even though they accomplish some
5. The FSR approach has the power not only to fill this gap for
selected innovations but also to restore the integrity of the total
technology innovation process. This is its potential, and it is
6. In order to accomplish its potential, FSR must be managed in
relation to the other segments of the process. If FSR is managed as a
free-standing function, it will become the third disconnected segment
of a process and will likely have little more impact.
7. In order to complete the testing phase and to undertake the
adaptive phase, the research must come to the terms with the farming
systems in which the innovation is expected to perform. It is this
fact which gives FSR its name. Coming to terms with the farmer is
also a source of much of the power in FSR. The success of research
and extension is judged only by their service to the farmer. They
havs no other reason to exist,
8. It is necessary (a) that enough be known and understood about
the farming system to serve as a basis for planning technology
innovation and adaptation and (b) that innovations and adaptations to
them be tested in the farming system in which they are expected to
perform and by criteria of that system. It is not necessary to
address the total system..
TIw-. 1-Tie. r. or. T Jo li.men sio...'.
CIMMYT refers to its system as two-tier. One "tiier" is the
research acti vity that deals directly with the farmer and his system
of farming. The other is the research activity more nearly
conventional. It is associated with the experiment station and
commodities or individual problems.
An alternate conceptualization is "two-dimension", with commodity
research along one axis and farming systems research activity along
the other. The FSR teams, often called adaptive research teams, are
responsible for a geographic area and must deal with all commodities.
The commodity research teams, CRT's, called applied research teams in
Malawi although they are to be organized by commodities, are
responsible for a coomodity, nation-wide, and must deal with all
areas. These two sets of responsibilities literally do constitute two
axes, in a sense perpendicular to each other. In analyzing research
data and planning annual programs, each axis must protect its own
interests, and yet the differences must be resolved.
IV. SCOPE OF WORK
The Scope of Work for this evaluation was contained in a cable to
the field, Unclassified State 279487 of 29 September 1983.
This section contains the items listed in that document with the
A. "Assess the effectiveness of the CIMMYT inputs provided under the
project and the impact these have had on achieving project outputs and
purpose. CIMMYT's efforts over the past several years have been
directed at strengthening and restructuring national agricultural
research and extension systems to be more responsive to farmers's
needs. A.I/D., through various bilateral efforts, is providing support
to selected host countries to facilitate this restructuring with
emphasis on farming systems research. The CIMMYT project is designed
to provide (refer to project paper and grant for more details): (1)
Direct assistance to host countries and A.I.D. contract teams in
esitalishinn methodol oqi es to carry out useful on-farm research, (2)
To provide training in FSR to selected host country scientists, (3) To
estarbish a coordinating network among COoperating national programs,
and (4) To assist in institutionalizing the farm-based research
process. The evaluation should review each of these objectives from
the viewpoint of the types of activities which CIMMYT has undertaken,
the quality of their effort and the quantity of accomplishments.
"It is noted in the project paper that nine countries are to be
serviced by the project. Some countries have received more support
and attention than others. The team should examine the rationale for
this and provide guidance to CIMMYT on allocation of inputs for the
remaining life of project. Additionally., given the experience of
CIMMYT to date, how should resources be allocated toward each of the
four objectives listed above, i.e., should more-effort be devoted to
training? and less to networking or institutional izing the FSR
This item calls for information and analysis provided elsewhere
in the report. The Description of Proj.ect Activities will respond to
part of what is requested here, and Item I below discusses training in
more detail. To a certain extent that material will be summarized
The purpose as stated in the project authorization document is:
To provide: networking among cooperating national programs, training
in participating countries, assitanse with on-farm research in
nine-countries, aid in institutionalizing the on-farm research
process, all in support of USAID efforts to build appropriate research
and extension systems in Eastern and Southern Africa.
There are certain discrepancies in the documentation. In another
place in the document cited above the n'.umber of countries was given as
ten, rather.than nine. The scope of work for this evaluation refers
to establishingg a coordinating network," whereas the project document
states, "networking .among cooperating national programs." This
evauation uses the latter edition on the basis that it is the most
useful to AID and is more in the spirit of the CIMMYT program. A
"cror rdinating network" implies a formal body dealing in bureaucratic,,
administrative issues rather than in technical and substantive issues.
It is my assessment that CIMMYT inputs provided under this
project have been exceptionally effective in achieving outputs and
purpose. In several cases these inputs have followed on pre-grant
1. In its direct e assistanDce CIMMYT has provided counsel to both
Zambia and Malawi in reorganization of their national research
agencies. In Swaziland direct assistance to the Pennsylvania State
University team has been exceptionally helpful in saving time and in
team building. Another form of direct assistance is the ex'pl oratory
meeting in which CIMMYT visits a country to seminar on FSR and the
farming system perspective. All countries except Somalia and Burundi
have been visited for these explorations. Direct assistance is an
alternate form of training in that CIMMYT deals in intellectual
matters, not-in simple straightforward service.
"Impacts" have many dimensions. The most dramatic impact is the
saving of time and elimination of frustration of the technical
assistance teams that can take advantage of CIMMYT experience.
2. In country training, in A sense, is an alternative 'to direct
action since the trainees are working on a real live project as the
laboratory for their training. Our only evidence is the reports of
trainees all of which are positive, even though some more than others.
No in-country trainee has gone through a cropping cycle, so there is
no completely objectivee" measure of im.pact.
Impact of training must be questioned, in a positive sense. The
CIMMYT concepts are probably more complicated than CIMMYT personnel
realize, since they have worked with them so long. At this point
trainees have not been on their own enough to test the training as
opposed to execution of an exercise under CIMMIT guidance. It must be
emphasized that this is a question, not a conclusion.
We did not observe the University of Zimbabwe training. Of some
value as evidence is the fact that the demand for this trainiq is now
just about twice the supply:, 60 applicants for the last course which
could handle about 30. Applications are being received from all over
the continent, not just the nine-country area.
The Zimbabwe training is not included in the grant.
3. N!etwqrki.n.g seems to be exceptionally effective. One mission
director feels this activity alone justifies the project., Small
countries recognize very clearly that they are going to have to depend
on resources beyond their own as a source of technology, and all
countries in the region are small to some degree. In Swaziland, the
research director told us that his country had long recognized the
need to become more relevant to the farmer but were frustrated in
means by which it could be accomplished. At least two donor projects
were described that were designed for that purpose. Neither were
adequate. The same director would not permit on farm research by the
PSU team in the 1982-83 season.. This season there will be an
extensive on-farm research activity. The director attended the
Administrators seminar, and a CIMMYT person has been stationed in
Swaziland for ten months. We are not able to establish cause and
Reports of the Animal Traction Workshop in Swaziland were
uniformly positive. This workshop brought together FSR personnel with
personnel doing conventional research on dry season feeding and use of
animal traction. "his workshop not only increased contact among
members of the two interest groups (which w.uld justify a workshop)
but it also facilitated the process of the two groups working
Still a third activity is the inter-country visits, both on
technical matters and orcgan:i. national matters. A group from Malawi
visited both Zimbabwe and Zambia when Malawi was deciding on the
direction of its re-organization.
4. I.D tiu..ti.g... i .zat:i.on impact or even activity was not
anticipated in the project paper during th first two years to any
grant degree. However, the CIMMYT style demands institutionalization
in so far as human resource development is concerned. CIMMYT" has been
operating in East Africa as a one-man operation since 1977. An input
of that magnitude demands the development of national human capacity.
But institutionalization requires more than the human resource. It
requires a system or organization in which that capacity can function
effectively. The CIMMYT program is addressing the national
organization issue through both its counsel with individual countries
and its administrators seminar. CIMMYT has provided major inputs into
the Zambia and Malawi re-organizations which are both committed to a
two-dimensional structure for their research programs,, Zambia has FSR
teams in five province (out of nine). Malawi will start with three
teams and plans to have on in each of its eight Agricultural
Development Divisions by 1986.
We have little empirical evidence of the impact of the
administrators seminars. We have considerable historical evidence of
the value of this kind of association for professionals who do most of
their work in isolation from peers. There is only one research
director per country. Research in most of these countries for one
reason or another is not highly valued. Thus he waqes a lonely
battle. It is difficult even to maintain his own convictions, to know
what he should expect. A regular 'meeting with others in almost the
identical situation has a powerful impact both intellectually and
psychologically. He is able to re-affirm his convictions, he does
learn what to expect from research. he can set some norms, he can
learn management techniques, among many others. One example comes
from the first administrators seminar where the research directors set
30 as the minimum number of professional workers needed for a two
dimensional (or two-tiered) research program. With fewer than 30 a
research system can effectively deal only with testing and adaptation.
This is a highly significant concept. Perhaps the number "30"
indicates more precision than is possible, but the concept is sound
(see FSR in context in Section III General Considerations.)
The only conclusion one can reach is that CIMMYT is already making
sicgnifi cant contribution to institutionalization and further this
contribution is completely compatible with AID's concepts of
institutionalization and consistent with AID's efforts to that end.
CIMMYT has given some countries more attention than others. It
realized that some sort of strategy was needed. This strategy calls
for intensive training in countries with ten or more professionals to
be trained and who demonstrate commitment and i interest Otther country
needs are handled by request with the exception of Swaziland in which
a CIMMYT man is stationed and which gets attention as a sort of "rent
payment." Networking and the Zimbabwe training are available to all.
It is difficult to suggest alternatives to CIMMYT's distribution
of efforts among the four areas and among nine countries with a few
exceptions which cannot be considered major., CIMMYT itself will make
some adaptations as it generates experience. It cannot handle more
than two comprehensive training programs a year. It expects requests
from Kenya, Tanzania, Sudan, and Zimbabwe, all of whom meet some of
Sugg.st i.onW_ for exceptions are these:
1. CIMMYT is now contemplating reducing the number of
administrators seminars to one every 18 months rather than one a year.
My own judgment is that the 12 months interval is justified., given the
importance of management to research development (not just FSR) in the
One reason for reducing the frequency of the administrators
seminar is the demand on administrator's time. They are being invited
to international meetings by a variety of donors. CIMMYT may he able
to collaborate with some other meeting sponsors in such a way that the
number of meetings could be controlled but yet meetings are not so
spaced as to lose their effectiveness.
2. There may be a chance to economize on CIMMYT time resource by
transferring more responsibility to national programs for the
technical workshops. One gets the impression that these are valued so
highly that national programs,, including expatriate contract teams,,
would help out considerably. CIMMYT may also be able to use
3. For new starts in an!y -ese.,arc-h project in the re-gion., REDSO
should consider making it virtually mandatory that (a) design teams
have at least a one-day CIMMYT briefing, more if CIMMYT can manage the
time, and (b) new AID-financed technical teams also have a briefing
Those represent no major re-allocation of resources.
B. "Examine the relationship of CIMMYT's efforts to ongoing and
planned programs of other international centers (ICRISAT, IITA, CIAT)
in Eastern and Shouthern Africa, to the various Title XII research
programs (both bilateral and Collaborative Research Support Project
(CRSP), and to the S and T Farming Systems Support Project being
implemented through the University of Florida."
CIMMYT operates in the area of research methodology and
organization. It has a very close convergence of interest with the
U.S. University contractors, and this is discussed under item F below.
Collaboration is good..
Some of the international agricultural research centers have FSR
pro-rams, but so far there has been little opportunity for
collaboration. The IlTA relationships abe discussed under "J" bel3o,..
CIrMMYT and ITTA have divided up the continent. CIMMYT has invited an
IITA agronomist to its team. The fact is IITA has very little to
contribute to a collaboration. CIMMYT and the ILCA are in
conversations on collaboration.. I do not know the ILCA program in
FSR, but it has had some joint activity with IITA. ICRISAT will
likely open a major front in Southern Africa, but it will be largely
devoted to sorghum. The ICRISAT FSR program aims at developing
improved systems per se and operates along lives substantially
different from those of CIMMYT. Collaboration with CRSP's will be
effected through national programs.
CIMMYT also has collaboration with IDRC oF Canada and the
Australian Center for International Agricultural Research. It has
worked with ISMAR, ICRAF, World Bank, ILCP, and IITA in national and
regi onal sem inars.
So far there doesn't seem to have been adequate collaboration on
meetings organized for administrators of national systems. This may be
one of the most important collaboration opportunities. Administrators
are key to research success, and their contact with each other can be
highly productive. Yet their time and talent represent a scarce
resource that must be- utilized with care and respect.
It is my judgment that collaboration with other entities is quite
adequate. My attitude toward collaboration is specific, however.
Given the great number of donor entities operating in related areas or
quasi-related areas, one needs a strategy of collaboration that
insures that something worthwhile emerges from it and that not more
resources are allocated to it than are justified.
There is considerable interest in FSSP and CIMMYT collaboration.
The Farming Systems Support Project, managed by the University of
Florida, is scarcely a year old. The CIMMYT program has'been building
for a decade. CIMMYT has developed its FSR program deliberately and
has a well-defined identifiable CIMMYT system. Although FSSP is
heavily influenced by the Guatemala experience, it is expected to
mobilize resources and expertise from a wide range of sources. Some
of those sources are U.S. Universities operating in the CIMMYT program
area. The University of Florida itself has a project in Malawi which
has excellent relationship with CIMMYT, and FSSP has had contacts of
varying degrees with Kansas State, Washington State, Penn State,
Oregon State, Illinois, and Utah State with a program in Somalia.
FSSP has a standing offer to any Title XII University to give all the
support it can in FSR programs. The university teams we have
contacted have high respect for CIMMYT.
FSSP and CIMMYT have had considerable contact. The discussions
have centered more on ways to work together than on any divit:ng up
the world. In Latin America FSSP and CIMMYT worked together in
Paraguay and other countries.
The two entities are not parallel. FSSP is an AID instrument,
totally funded by AID for specific AID purposes. It is responsible to
work worldwide, although with a focus on Africa. It is definitely a
sport entity. While CIMMYT is operating on AID funding in East
Africa, it has its own program with enough diversity of funding and
strategies to continue funding that it can almost be characterized as
autonomous. Even though it supports country programs CIMMYT is only a
short step from operational, and it is definitely developmental, i.e.
constantly extending the FSR concept. FSSP is quite far removed from
operations, and the extent to which it will further the state of the
art has simply not been determined.
There is not much likelihood that FSSP will mount a field type
operation of the CIMMYT East Africa type anywhere in the world and
even less that FSSP would pick up the specific program if the CIMMYT
Prcaraxm is terminated. If it did there .is little chance it could
equal CIMMYT at CIMMYT's own game. This is an i. individual an:al.ygi~.'
It has not been cleared with my FSSP colleagues and in no way reflects
FSSP policy or commits FSSP.
These considerations are important to AID. FSSP and CIMMYT
outputs are two different products. They should be expected to
develop complementarities. They are not very likely substitutes to
any great degree. They operate under substantially different AID
Missions in the CIMMYT region can call on CIMMYT for assistance
in training of various types and for some direct assistance in
response to specific problems. They can also look to CIMMYT for
consultation with national systems on organization and management.
Support in the FSSP clearly includes help with the organization
and briefing of design and evaluation teams, and this function CIMMYT
likely will not do, although it may have an input. FSSP will develop
a literature program which missions can access. FSSP has networking
responsibility, but will not likely be active in this region except in
collaboration with CIMMYT.
FSSP could help bri-ef contractor teams and individuals coming on
University teams and support U.S. Universities in their back stop
operations, including recruiting of personnel.
FSSP can supporto" CIMMYT as well as any other entity. As CIMMYT
coritinures the evolution of its program it will create demands and
opportunities for collaboration. These opportunities will take the
form of field experimentation. Four areas are most likely:
Integration of Extension into the FSR to make it FSR/E, methods to
deal with livestock, refinements to on-farm research methodology, and
organization and management of national R/E systems. While FSSP may be
supporting the CIMMYT program it can be expected that the REDSO/CIMMYT
program will provide considerable experience that will be useful
All indications are that collaboration is adequate and with the
relevant entities. AID should expect increased collaboration between
FSSP and CIMMYT as FSSP gathers momentum. Reasonable attention needs
to he given to collaborating with other entities in staging meetings
and seminars with administrators.
-C. "Review project implementation and rate of expenditures to
determine further accomplishments which reasonably can be expected
through remaining life of project .or probable shortfalls against
targets. Provide a brief updated implementation schedule."
For all practical purposes the CIMMYT project started in January
1983, even though the grant was awarded in mid-1982. That's a scarce
ten months at the time of the review. That start up time is no cause
Project costs have turned out to be somewhat less than budgeted
because many trainee costs were picked up by national systems.
Thus less than anticipated expenditures will likely not be
ref elected in project accomp i shments. Compre ensive train ing was
started in Zambia and Malawi in 1983. These are planned for an
18-month cycle. Expectations are to start two more in 1983 from
Tanzania, Kenya, and Sudan.
The only shortfall may be in the technical workshop.
As far as project accomplishments are concerned,
institutionalization is far ahead of schedule.
Use of consultants and a greater contribution from national
programs may help get the technical workshops back on a two per year
Perhaps a more vigorous promotion of the inter-country
visitations in the Newsletter would increase special interest
D. There was no Item "D" in referenced cable.
E. "Evaluation should address programmatic issues with respect to
further support to FSR program in Eastern and Southern Africa. Should
CIMMYT support to FSR objectives be continued beyond expiration of
project? and, if so, at what level of effort?
What are problems and constraints with respect to CIMMYT on this
i. issue? These recommendations wil. assist AID/W in reviewing any
proposed follow-on activities to the present CIMMYT activity. Should
geographic scope of project be examine/revised? How will countries
such as Rw.anda and Burund:i. w!h:ich have :impending agr. cu.. tura l. resear-ch
projects with FSR components, gain access to project services?"
The CIMM'YT (qrnt project must be justified on its increase in
effectiveness of country programs supported by JUSAID missions. This
impact on country programs will come through direct action (training
or assistance) to the country and by networking both at the
administrator level and at the technical level.
From our observations the activities under the grant have already
had substantial impact as evidence presented throughout this report
indicate. It is my judgment, and it is without reservation., that this
project should be ext ended,, Virtually all of the benefits to USAID
supported country programs are accumulative.. That is the impact of
five annual seminars of admini strators can be expected to i mpraovo
substantially the management of country research systems in the region
and the administrative environment in which UJSAIDI programs will b1 .
The C IMMYT program shou ld be ex :. panded to incl a. ud e an agronomim i. .
So far it is largely a program of economists. As emphasis grows on
the on-farm research and the program evolves the need for agronomy
expertise grows. Two factors should be considered before expansion
beyond that is concerned. One is that it is not CIMMYT nature to be
large and highly visible. The second is that as national competence
developed, the size of CIMMYT may not have to grow in relation to the
increased scope of action that AID may find useful.
There is indication from this evaluation that CIMMYT may be able
to have its greatest impact early in project history. Thus there may
be more net gain to provide at least limited assistance to Rwanda and
Burundi even at the expense of delay in certain calls in other
cciuntries,. Some assistance with design efforts, even if onl y team
briefing may also help new country programs.
This evaluation produces no evidence or analysis justifying.
termination of the project,. There has been much evidence presented
justifying its continuation and expansion.. After this short
experience there is a stronger case for extension than for making the
The general nature of the program needs only minor adjustment.
It's working well as is.
It should continue as a grant which gives CIMMYT op!erat:i.onal
f ].exibil.ity and does not place a heavy management lbur-den n AID.
Size and geographic scope must be decided on many factors that
can-'t be dealt with in an eval.uat.i on,, Project performance j ust ifi es a
some what larger investment,,
Given the dynamic nature of FSR, there needs to be some strategic:
planning between AID and CIMMYT,, FSR is in its starting phase, and
basic training is very much needed. At some point national systems
will not need that help at nearly the same degree as now. There may
be need for other assistance, even for developmental work.
AID needs to give CIMMYT a reasonably long planning horizon in
its commitment so that CIMMYT can offers its clients and collaborators
some security of expectation.
During the development of this project, which preceded FSSP
approval, there was discussion of the possibility of merging the two.
That was a time of much uncertainty concerning both projects. Now
that experience has been gained an'd the t:wo projects are taking shape
there remains little reason to put them together. CIIMMYT is
providing a specific service to the REDSO region under an effective
-anrd ff icient management style,. The perspective for success is qond,
PC":clg 1... liMIYT i. allogpyed to .prsi.sIt. It is difficult to see any
advantage in merging the projects. It is easy to see serious risks,
both to content and to management style, from a merger.
F. "Examine the relationships between CIMMYT and A.I.D. contract
universities, E.G., at training sessions what is the mi;x c:f contract
univeristies and host country participants?"
The relationships between CIMMYT and USAID U.S. University
contractors have been better than might have been expected. U.S.
University personnel have been in research all their careers and in
fairly close contact with farmers. Still some of them have been
exceptionally responsive to the CIMMYT system and in some cases a
r emar kab le rapport seems to have developed.
In some countries, such as Zambia, only three U.S. University
personnel attended the course, but that is all that are working in
FSR. On the other hand, in Swaziland where most of the national staff
are in training, contact has been main.y.with the U.S. staff of eight.,
U.S. University staff as the resident experts in national
programs are highly important to the CIMMYT operation, and evidence
that we have gathered indicates this collaboration is completely
adequate. U.S. University teams turn over fairly rapidly, and
assessments will have to be made as to training ofn replacements. This
may be a problem that FSSP needs to worry about. FSSP may also help
in recruitment or selection.of personnel for University contract.
In several cases University personnel have played important roles
in CIMMYT activities, such as the Zimbabwe training and the technical
workshop. There have also been cases in which the University team has;
been a factor in getting CIMMYT involved in a country.
Many of the universities in the CIMMYT region are involved in
FSSP, including the University of Florida.
One problem was noted. Some UI,.S. University personnel do not
take readily to the CIMMYT system. Even th!ou.gh it is compatible with
the "Land-Grant System," the means of applying it are different. It
is not easy to evaluate this problem. Confusion regarding means (or
form) interferes with a clear understanding of objectives (or
substance). In some-cases, but not all, this problem has been
reflected in some dissatisfaction regarding contractor recruitment.
Fortunately, the problem is not widespread. Some "old Land-Grant
.types" adapt very well to the CIMMYT system.
G. "Review financial and project progress reports to REDSO/ESA,
RFMC/NAIROBI and AFR/RA reports in light of reporting requirements of
grant. Examine now CIMMYT reporting requirements can meet REDSO/ESA
and AFR/RA project reporting requirements."
This review identified no management problem in REDSO stemming
from inadequate reporting. The grant document available to me had no
reference to reporting. This should be a rather routine matter
between CIMMYT and REDSO that can:be resolved easily. Good reports,
even though time consuming, often work to the benefit of the grantee
and so are worth taking seriously. Complete reports also provide a
project history that are valuable to AID as well as to CIMMYT.
Somewhat more attention needs to be given to the reports, even though
immediate project management has not beeh impaired by reporting
H. "Assess the utility of CIMMYT's rapid assessment survey techniques
in terms of acceptance, strengths and weaknesses."
CIMMYT's rapid assessment survey techniques can be identified as
(a) analysis of secondary data and discussion with knowledgable
people, (b) the informal survey, and (c) the formal survey. 'The
techniques involve at least two disciplines, economics and agronomy.
The first two are e;xcept:ionall.y useful, in part because they
address problems and information sources that for many are virgin
territories. The learning curve is very high. These techniques are
also relatively simple to master. There is some structure to the
informal survey, but its main purpose is to start to know the farmer
and gain insights into how he conducts his business. It's a first and
vital step to establishing production linkage between the farmer and
the public research service. Most researchers accept it readily.
The formal survey is a good technique in the hands of masters.
It provides good data on what, farmers do. Making it useful to answer
hv questions and verify insights and hypotheses developed from
informal surveys requires considerable skill. It is not clear that
novices handle it well.
It is my j..iudqment that perhaps too much is made o- the "rapid
survey techniques." They are a nor-recurrinqg phase of FSR and are only
made necessary by the very substantial ignorance of the farmer that
prevails in many public institutions or-ganized to serve him. Real
understanding of the farmer and his strategies will come with
sustained interaction between the farmer and the research system via
FSR. On-farm trials and collaboration with extensi on will likely be
the really. y productive activity es for- understanding the f armer,,
Once the research system has come to terms with the farmer the
rapid survey techniques will be of considerably less import. In the
meantime they serve their purpose quite well.
I. "Examine the success of CIMMYT's methods used in training
sessions. What factors account for the success of these methods?"
Training deals at several levels. It can impart information, it
can teach skills, it can achieve understanding and attitude change,
and it.can teach problem solving or creativity. As CIMMYT emphasizes
the farming system perspective in addition to or along with
methodologies, it moves to the more complex of these levels of
training. It is not simply training in the implementation of a set of
procedures as it may some times appear. For example, in the informal
survey training, students must come to understand a bit of economics,
must learn to distinguish among systems, and must be able to identify
farmer strategies in the allocation of his resources. They must also
learn skills in selecting respondents, in conducting interviews, in
inter-disciplinary collaboration, and in handling data, not all
simple, straight forward skills. We have evidence that the CIMMYT
training in the utilization of secondary data and in the informed
survey has been quite good. In almost all cases trainees seem to have
made real progress. We have some comparative evidence. One team did
two informal surveys before training and one in connection with
training. The team's own judgment is our evidence.
We don't have that evidence with respect to the formal survey,.
However, at this early stage of project history one can say little
with respect to "success" as the discussion of "success factors" will
The CIMMYT training in FSR methodology is a combination of study,
classroom work:, and learning by doing. The learning by doing is not
simply a training exercise, however. It almost always involves the
actual completion of a task in a project area. Thus, in the Zambia
training an informal survey was actually accomplished and used as the
basis for a formal survey (also a training exercise) which in turn led
to a training session in technology screening and evaluation against
farmer strategies and problems and to the design of on-farm tests.
The Zambia training cycle is not complete. An evaluation of success
of training has to ask, at this point, if the trainees were well
trained or well supervised. We do not know how the students will do on
While handouts, written material, and some visual aids are
utilized, practice on a real live project with adequate CIMMYT
instruction and supervision is the distinguishing characteristic of
CIMMYT training in the standard FSR procc.ss.
However, CIMMYT does much training outside that mode. In fact,
all four areas of CIMMYT work under this grant finally devolve into
some sort of training. Direct assistance is a form of training, again
with work on real live problems, with individual attention.
Networking for adminri strators utilizes a seminar format, with
small group discussion to increase participation over large group
discussion, and these groups deal with real live problems. The
technical networking also makes heavy use of participation and is
built around prob 1 ems spec:i ficaly identify ied, with participants who
face those problems.
The only exception to the real live problem is the training at
the Un.iversity of Zimbabwe, The students do practical work w:i.th real
data, but it is a classroom exercise.
Practical:, work experience training on real live problems
supplemented by class work are factors responsible for success.
J. "Review the status of the International Institute for Tropical
Agriculture, IITA, Research agroomist involvement in the CIMMYT
The IITA agronomist position never materialized. IITA had
planned to station an agronomist in Nairobi to work with the CIMMYT
program for about two years. The plan was to bring the agronomist
back to IITA to work in its FSR program. The plan was not implemented
because IITA and the Government of Kenya could not come to an
agreement on the agronomist's being posted in Kenya,,
V. OTHER OBSERVATIONS
Li .stockm.i (ongonmys In Extnsion5lm
CIMMYT is being urged to deal more explicitly with livestock, to
bring extension into FSR, and to make more use of agronomists. These
urgings are on a sound basis, but the needs among the three are not
parallel. CIMMYT is not neglecting agronomy. It has access to
agronomists from CIMMYT/Mexica,, At least two ex-patriate agronomists
are working very well with CIMMYT, and there is considerable agronomic
talent in the region, which CIMMYT uses effectively. Up until now,
the lack of agronomists on the CIMMYT team has not been a limiting
factor. However, the on-farm trial is receiving increasing emphasis,
and agronomists are needed--both for their real contribution to the
process and for relating to other research agronomists.
(The need for engineers may emerge, since labor is the primary
constraint but no one raised the issue.)
The livestock issue is of a somewhat different nature. The claim
is .hat CIMMYT is dealing with cropping systems, not farming systems.
The fact is that one does not deal with the cropping systems without
an impact on the farming system. Another fact is that one of the
major problems with livestock is feed supply, which comes in large
part from the cropping system,, There is, of course, a need to deal
with livestock, but just what that need is and how to address it
require analysis beyond the conventional wisdom. CIMMYT is not likely
to add a livestock expert. It will likely wJork1 out a collaboration
with ILCA. Mixing the CIMMIT and ILCA systems may present some
CIMMYT rec:o gn:i zes the need to and does invol ve Extension, hut so
-far it has not figured how to do so adequately. The CIMMYT scheme is
to keep Extension informed, to work with extension personnel in
developing and taking surveys, and sometimes even to seeking extension
help in on-farm trial work. Until now, however, extension is involved
as an instrument of the research process, not as an entity with as
much to gain as does research from the improved research contact with
the farmer. In some countries extension is taking the initiative in
getting into the act in its own interest. In other countries,
however, not much activity is noted. CIMMYT needs to do some more
work on conceptualizing the role of Extension and its relation with
Research, as do national systems, USAID missions, and other projects.
NtWOsrk ing D andE -i-parAtrat
Networking possibilities are great in the REDSO/CIMMYT area and
could be (perhaps are) overlooked. CIMMYT has a great deal of
credibility in the REDSO area. This grant has enabled AID to
capitalize on that, but it is not clear to what extent. It is clear,
for example, that the CIMIMYT reputation has had a substantial
influence on the reorganization of Zambia and Malawi national systems.
What is not clear is whether these countries would have gone ahead
with reorganization according to CIMMYT if there had not been
resources to offer training and to stay with the systems through the
early stages. These resources comthethrough the CIMMYT grant, but they
also come through b i-lateral progr ams., Als
intangible regional (or other-country) psychological support that
convinces one country to make a substantial reorganization.
What is clear is the critical role ex-patriate teams from the
bilateral programs will play in implanting the CIMMYT system in the
region. This sounds almost as if the country programs are supporting
CIMMYT, rather than CIMMYT supporting them. It really does not make
any difference. The CIMMYT program has seven years experience in the
region. Its aims are the same as those of AID, and its emphasis on
institutionalization is completely consistent with the AID and Title
Networking and training from CIMMYT are commonly thought of as
aiming at national personnel, and certainly they should be. However,
for the intermediate period specific attention needs to be paid to
training and networking needs of expatriate personnel. Expatriates in
many countries of the region make up much of the national system
personnel complement. Even though that is likely to be temporary, it
will continue long enough that this class of personnel need attention
and not just incidentally.
Expatriate personnel expressed needs for contact with other
countries--both expatriates and nationals. REDSO/CIMMYT need to
recognize the networking-training potential and encourage expatriate
teams to take leadership in developing networking activities. Funds
could come from the CIMMYT grant and also from bi-lateral project
managers., CIMMYT can help by use of its good offices and by
facial itating communication.
P"'ersisstejnc::e vs.. Geni.uy
Two countries have reorganized their research systems to reflect
the CIMMYT system of "on farm research with a farming systems
perspective," and several others have made significant commitments to
the concept., Bi-l ateral projects are supporting these commitments.
While the logic is sound, though simple, there is some risk in these
decisions and investments. The risk is that countries and supporting
donors will not persist in efforts to make them work. At this
juncture it is probable that persistence will be the better part of
genius. It is logical to associate the CIMMYT program with
persistence. Seven years in East Africa and ten years in evolution,
CIMMYT owes its achievements largely to persistence, a systematic,
planned, evolutionary persistence, AID, which has not been
particularly noted for persistence, has the opportunity in this project
to achieve a measure of persistence that is difficult under other
measures. Now is not the time to search for "innovative, new ideas"
but rather to persist in support of a concept that stands the tests of
logic and has proven effective in other environments and other eras..
FSR and. African Lyni.ver-_it.:.,..s
At least two African academic institutions, Edgerton College and
the University of Zimbabwe, are reported to be building the FSR
ccrcept into their teaching programs. We' did not see the former, but
the U of Z is using it in the farm management program and in an area
development project in the Zambesi River Valley which will involve
personnel from several disciplines.
Most universities teach courses in Extension. As soon as CIMMYT
and other develop the farming systems perspective to include
extension, these courses may offer a locus for FSR activities. These
programs are sometimes thin in content, and the FSR perspective will
be helpful. FSSP is oriented to FSR/E, and that orientation appears,
after this exercise, to be useful.
F:.ub .i c.atsi. ns., !ews lettec. BRierCEM
One mission raised a specific question about publications, who
publishes them and who distributes them. The grant document takes
little note of publications.
The Newsletter is one element of networking. Limited examination
of the Newsletter leads to the impression that it needs more attention
to news items of what is happening in the region. CIMMYT invites
contributions, which have been scarce, but its personnel travel widely
in the region and could do some reporting. Knowledge of what is
happening in other countries, even if skimpy, would be useful to
CIMMYT reports to AID have also been on the skimpy side. They
seem to satisfy the administrative requirements., The project document
is almost silent on the matter. However, for substantive or technical
purposes, it would be useful for CIMMYT to make a record of its
activities and achievements in the program, completely aside from
administrative, contractual considerations.
The same sort of information could be used in the reports and the
Id1al .ye CIMMYT Sytvui
The CIMMYT system can be expected to work best if the country
situation permits initiating it from the beginning and if the
predominant farming system involves basic grains on non-irrigated
land. CIMMYT has had several chances for the ideal type program. Not
all have been,.however, and, further, national systems have made some
adaptations notg quite consist ent with the ideal,,
In Lesotho, for example, a project was underway for almost four
years before there was appreciable CIMMYT contact. There still has
-not been muchh. Plans are for more contact as new team members join
the Washington State team. Whether the CIMMYT system can make a
contribution and still maintain project momentum remains to be known.
Lesotho has also added the "combination farm" concept that is not in
the CIMMYT system. Purpose of the combination farm is to put all of
the ideal technologies together in a single farming system.
Swaziland presented CIMMYT with commercial vegetable production
system on newly irrigated land. -CIMMYT seems to be accommodating this
variation in the "typical" system.
Zimbabwe has come up with the Farming Systems Development Center,
an experiment station FSR activity, which is not included in the ideal
We do not know how to predict how CIMMYT will react to and
accommodate each of these variations. In some cases it may learn from
them. In some cases it may learn that the variations are non
productive. Indications are that CIMMYT will retain and protect the
integrity of its ideal type but will not insist on strict compliance
as a price for its assistance. Most countries seem grateful for the
existence of the ideal type and seem eager to understand it. There
also seems to be a tendency to want to adapt it in such a way as to
have a program with some characteristics peculiarly national.
Sh o o r t- r .x. _e_._ : t z. ,t. .. ion .c
We only picked it up in one country, the only country in which
extension personnel were on our list of contacts, but it is definitely
expected of FSR in Malawi that useable, extendable results will be
produced fairly early. This is a mixed blessing. It does place the
right kind of pressure on FSR/E. FSR does not enjoy the long-term
shield claimed for conventional research. Yet it does need some time:,
and that could mean several years because of the annual cycle of
cropping. The danger is that the early-term expectations will be
unreasonable term expectations.
CLMMiYT and the Sub-Prgf essi.onal
Up until now CIMMYT has emphasized the professional worker in its
programs, i.e. those who the B.S. or equivalent. In at least two
countries we picked up the need for training of the sub-professional.
This was especially noted for the technician who support the
professionals. and the kind of training specified was that which could
be characterized as basic training' in research methodology and not
limited to on-farm research.
It is recommended:
1. That the CIMMYT project be continued in its present format.
There is little room to question that the project is a profitable
one. It has many ways of paying off. The most straightforward is the
time it saves a new project, such as in Swaziland, in getting up to
fall steem. It almost certainly improves the quality of the work, but
that measure is not so straightforward. A few minor adjustments, such
as briefing project design teams and new project teams could increase
this pay off. Given the AID investment in agricultural research in
East Africa, it doesn't take much increase in effectiveness to cover
the CIMMYT costs. It is my judgment that CIMMYT contribution is
exceeding the break ,even point by a considerable margin.
The CIMMYT project also has complimentary effect through it
institutionalization activities. The fact, for example, that national
research administrators gather regularly to reinforce one anoth'-r in
their attempts to improve research management can be expected to
improve considerably the environment in which USAID projects operate.
CIMMYT assistance in research organization, such as in Malawi and
Zambia, should add further to the improved environment.
A further justification is the fact that CIMMYT is working well,
in some cases exceptionally (and surprisingly) well, with U.S.
University contractors. Even though CIMMYT aims to train nationals,
it is highly important to be synchronized with the resident technical
assistance teams. In some cases these teams today are the. de fact
research services and will be until enough trainees return to
nationalize the systems. In all cases they are critical to FSR
ini ti atives..
2. That the project be continued under currant administrative
This is a grant project. CIMMYT own efforts are so nearly in the
Agency's interest that AID can safely handle the project by a grant.
This greatly eases the management burden, and some missions expressed
appreciation for it. There is considerable discussion of bringing
this project under the Farming System Support Project. Such action
would expose the East Africa program to significant risks. One is the
shift of management from the Africa Bureau to the Science and
Technology Bureau. This not only moves the project from Africa
management, but it could change substantially the style of management.
The FSSP is not a grant, and AID insists in more participation in
management than is needed in the CIMMYT effort. The other risk is
under funding, since. CIMMYT would be in direct competition with many
other demands on a worldwide Title XII project.
Earlier discussions on merging the CIMMYT and FSSP projects need
to be discournte.d heavily a n Lhe basis of the information now available
from experience of the two projects and experience of missions with
3. That AID and CIMMYT consider expanding the project.
Several factors support expansion. Curently CIMMYT is oriented
to the professional level cadre of national research systems. The
other needs were identified in this evaluation. One was training for
the subprofessional in research, and the other was training for
extension, an activity that may also involve many subprofessionals.
Another factor that supports expansion is the need for the
services of an agronomist as .on-farm research receives increased
attention. Up until now, the CIMMYT program has been staffed by
A factor that needs to be carefully analyzed is the impact of
expansion on CIMMYT style and personality. CIMMYT has achieved its
current position as a small organization with a carefully drawn
strategy and low visibility. At some size there will be a
transformation, and that transformation needs to be managed and under
Needs are likely to be- changing in the region, and CIMMYT/REDSO
needs to make some projection of needs as a basis for expansion.
4. That AID make a commitment to provide CIMMYT a five-year
planning horizon so it has same security of expectations and can in
turn provide security to its clients and collaborators.
5. That CIMMYT giv" early attention to integrating extension
into its "farming system perspective" and that USAID's be encouraged
to make modest investments of the right nature in extension.
FSR as CIMMYT is now promoting it offers perhaps the best
opportunity to link research and extension that has been available in
LDC's since Point IV days. At the same time extension has much to
contribute and could well improve chance of FSR success.
Investment needed by the missions is in the development within
extension of a relatively small group of well-trained personnel to
provide technical leadership to extension. There is currently a
significant over investment in nu.! r.br of field personnel in relation
the number of well trained people in this technical leadership group.
FSSP and U.S. Universities in the region can be expected to
collaborate with CIMMYT.
6. That CIMMYT and REDSO develop a networking strategy for the
There is a widespread common interest in the region, creating
ideal conditions for networking. The opportunity needs to be
The emphasis needs to be on networking not a network, at thi.s
t.ime. Later, it may be wise to formalize relationships, but currently
the emphasis must be on communication.
Such a strategy should include regular meetings of research and
extension directors- in collaboration with others who call meetings
with them. It should also involve ex-patriates and bi-lateral
projects who can provide some leadership and even funds for networking
7. That FSSP and CIMMYT be encouraged by AID to hold a joint
seminar to assess the state of the art, to explain each its own
program to the other, to explore various means of collaboration, and
to analyze needs in further development of the FSR area of competence.
This would need to be a working group between the two AID contractors
with fairly complete attendance of members of the two groups but with
severe limitations on attendance of outsiders.
8. That CIMMYT review its Newsletter and quarterly report with
an eye to improving the status of current information on FSR interests
and activities and to improving the record with respect to FSR in East
VII. COUNTRY NOTES
Lesotho has a farming systems project being implemented by
Washington State University which was started in 1979. While it was
designed as a farming systems project there was virtually no
foundation research capacity to which it could attach. Still there was
a tendency to go through the FSR ritual. The project has been
modi field substantially. It aims to help develop the general research
capacity but following the farming system perspective.
The CIMMYT comprehensive training program may not be as relevant
for Lesotho. Lesotho was represented at the administrators seminar
and at the technical workshop on draft power. It receives the
Newsletter. At this point CIMMYT has not made a contribution to the
institutionalization of FSR in Lesotho. Two CIMMYT visits have been
made, Yet all the evidence we could marshall indicated that the
CIMMYT project was not understood and no help was requested.
Much of our time was spent in explaining the project and getting
some feel of needs. One area of need that emerged in several
different forms was assistance with on-farm trials, including
development of an on-farm trial strategy, design of trials, and
analysis and interpretation of on-farm trial results,. There appeared
to be a definite tendency to apply vigorous scientific criteria
appropriate to highly controlled research- a fact which may indicate
an interpretation of the FSR concept different from that of CIMMYT.
Another need was that o f foster ng c communi. ca at ion among technical
people in the region with common interests. This would not be as
specific as the animal traction workshop, but would simply facilitate
communication among individuals who a're isolated from others with
similar interest.. This kind of meeting would need CIMMYT sponsorship,
but could be staged in such a manner as to take few CIMMYT resources.
A third need identified was training of top layer
sub-professionals in basic research technologies. Currently, CIMMYT
training is geared to professional level people, but it is possible
CIMMYT can address this need or work with others in addressing it. A
need was also expressed for Farming Systems Extension.. While CIMMYT
recognizes the need to link with Extension, I am not satisfied that
the evolution of the CIMMYT system handles Extension adequately. FSSP
also does not address it adequately.
We were not able to talk to the deputy director for research
who attended the CIMMYT administrators seminar as well as the animal
traction workshop. He may have had a better understanding of the
CIMMYT program, but if he did he apparently was not communicating with
either his director or the team. Some of the confusions were
interesting. Some wanted more and different attention from the other
branches of CIMMYT. One set of needs addressed help in subject
Even with this lack of CIMMYT-Lesotho interaction and
understanding we found no criticism of CIMMYT. The work of CIMMYT in
East Africa was known and respected. 'There did seem to be a hesitance
to call on CIMMYT, either a hesitancy or a lack of information.
The entire mission is interested in the concept of inter-country
coll aborati on, as well as in FSR., The missi on direct t or met with us
twice, in our first and last interviews. There is evidence of
considerable frustration over several inter-country efforts in
agricultural research being discussed or mounted for the area. As in
Swaziland the USAID recognizes that Lesotho most rely on other
countries for much of its agricultural technology and is keenly
interested in contacts with other countries.
One generalized need was emphasized. That was the need -for more
attention to the training of some extension personnel up to a level
equal to that of most researchers. The WSU/Research Division group is
providing considerable training to extension field personnel, acting
almost as a specialist staff.
Keeping of detailed farm records was one of the first activities
started in the project. There are now mixed feelings as to the
utility of these records. The sample size will likely be reduced, but
there is real hesitancy to discontinue the activity.
It was in Lesotho that was expressed the most specific feeling of
need for ex-patriate team members to participate in regional
There is not a two-tier (or two dimensional) structure here.
Rather the entire research program is oriented to the farmer. This is
perhaps the logical structure for a small country. There is one
question, however. The Research Division aims at developing some
so-called "combination farms" on which "ideal systems" are utilized.
Persons contacted: Edna Borady, USAID Mission Director- Barry
Hill and Jim Dunn, USAID Agricultural Office; Winston Ntsche,
Director; and Abraham Sefeame of Research Division; Clark Ballard,
David Hollandr, Gordon Van Eps,, Earl K. osterman, Peter Wyetlh, and David
Youmans of the Washington State University team; and Mark Wood of
The Department of Agricultural Research (DAR) of the Ministry of
Agriculture is being reorganized to bring FSR in as integral part of
the research program. Called Adaptive Research Teams in three of the
eight Agricultural Development Divisions plus a national ART team.
Plans are to have ART's in all eight districts by 1986. There is a
considerable similarity to the Zambia program which also uses the
Adaptive Research terminology. A member of the University of Florida
team occupies the line position of director of the national ART. The
similarity with Zambia is not a coincidence. Both national systems
plan to adopt the CIMMYT system, and the Zambian reorganized system
was visited, as part of CIMMYT's networking, as Malawi was deciding on
Extension may also add positions to'enable it to participate on
almost equal basis with research in the adaptive research effort. The
Director of Extension felt somewhat left out of the adaptive research
effort, commenting that Extension seems to be brought in on second
thought. He hopes to add two positions in each ADD to join the DAR
team of agronomist and farm economist,, If this can be accomplished,
Malawi will have one of the few (if not the only) program with
extension as a full partner.
Pieces seem to be in place for a program that has a good chance
for success if program managers stay with it for a long enough time
for the concept to be made.functional.
Plans are to have ART's in all ADD's plus a headquarters team
operating within three years. We were not able to discuss with the
commodity research teams their views of the organization.. The ART's
have several 1li n ages to establ ish --with farmers;, wi. th commod:i. ty
teams, with extension, and with the ADD's.. To a certain extent, but
not entirely, ADD's and Extension are the same.
Some disappointment was expressed that CIMMYT does not work with
livestock. However, extension has very little work with livestock,
even through the ADD's. There was made mention that ILCA was
interested in providing livestock inputs. We do not know what it has
CIMMYT has provided training and assistance this year to enable
at least two ART's to do some on-farm research this season. Plans
are, however, for CIMMYT to bring its complete eight session
comprehensive in-country training program to Malawi, starting in March
1984 and continuing for 18 months. It will be the ideal CIMMYT
course. Some worries were expressed that the sessions would not be
long enough and that Malawi would need more help than CIMMYT could
provide to one country.
Two ADD's were visited -- Lilongwe and Kasumbo. Program officers
of each one were clear on their expectation of FSR. Both referred to
improved technologies for the intermediate to short term. They both
emphasized their interest for near term results. Both had the same
complaints about conventional research. It didn't seem to fit the
needs of their clients. Both called attention to the fact that FSR
goes directly to the farmer to learn about his problems and why he
dealt with them the way he did.
We also heard here, from extension, the expectation of early or
intermediate term results from DAR as a consequence of FSR. Our only
contact with extension was in Malawi. We do not know how general this
expectation is in the region.
Li longwe ADD (I....ADD) has had considerable experience with FSR and
considers itself a pioneer in the effort, while Kasumbo is .just now
starting to work with the concept. CIMMYT helped with surveys in one
area of LADD in 1978, but it was not followed up with on-farm trials.
A University of Florida team member helped with a survey in another
area since 1980. The evaluation officer of LADD attended a CIMMYT
regional course in Nairobi.
Even though Kasumbo ADD was not as experienced in FSR, it was no
less clear on the problem it wanted to address. The program manager
wants to provide full cooperation and support to the ART of DAR and
made a special plea that needs to be taken seriously. That was to
provide ample training opportunities to certain of this staff so they
could participate fully with DAR personnel. DAR does not want to
share its training resource and exhorts Extension to find its own
We find here as in other countries excellent cooperation and
mutual respect between CIMMYT and U.S. University contractors. One
University of Florida staff member has served as instructor for the
CIMMYT-University of Zimbabwe regional training program.
The organization of the ART's is not the only organization task
faced by Malawi research. The conventional research component is also
being reorganized,. Until now it has been organized by subject matter
discipline. The re-organization will be by commodities, and each
commodity team will involve several disciplines. Thus conventional
research personnel will be faced not only with developing
relationships with the ART's but also with adapting to a new set of
relationships among themselves.
The internal changes along with extensions interest to get into
the FSR game puts a heavy responsibility on Malawi administrators.
The chance for payoff is high. If they succeed, Malawi, will have one
of the most completely integrated technology innovation system in the
USAID/Malawi holds that extension participation in FSR is
essential and that technical assistance to help make FSR functional
will be needed for up to five years. FSR as a concept is now
completely accepted, but the task remains to make it fully functional.
A real fear exists that T.,A. may be terminated before FSR is
adequately institutional ized,,
Persons contacted: USAID: Bill Judy, Agricultural Officer, and
David Rarms, Acting Mission Director.
Ministry of Agriculture: Willie Lipato:, Principal Secretary;
Gilbert Chirwa., Chief Projects Officer, Planning Division; Terry Legg,
Chief Agricultural Research Officer; M, Muwill., Chief Agricultural
Extension Officer; Henry Mwandemere, Deputy Chief Agricultural
Research Officer; Tony Standen, Controller; Richard Bolt, Assistant to
Research Officer, and M. Erez, Planning Advisor; and S.S. Kamvazina,
L livestock iOf f:icer.
L..ilongwe Agricultural Development Division: F.M. Kangaude,
Program Officer; G.S,.Z. J.ere, Evaluation Officer; and Perine Jere,
Research Trials Officer.,,
Kasumnbo Agricultural Develop::ment Division: N:ick S:i chinga,.
Program Officer; PN.H.. Zulu, Crops and Trials Officer; G,, Ndolo,
Ex tension Officer; and M,,E. (3eake and A.G. Khum ban yina, Evaluation
Bunda College: Ray Billingsley, Head, Department of Sociology
The Swaziland research organization has 14 positions for
professional level people, one filled by a Ugandan and 13 by Swazis.
Two others have been appointed into positions they hope will be
approved. Of these, ten are now in U.S. training under the
Pennsylavnia State University project, which has eight persons on
One of the three CIMMYT persons, All.an Low, is stationed here
even though Swaziland does not meet the CIMMYT criteria for intensive
work. Plans were to station him in Zimbabwe, but diplomatic
arrangements could not be effected. Since Low had lived in Swaziland
previously he was posted back there.
Without exception, USAID, the contractor, and the Host Government
were grateful for CIMMYT assistance and recognized that had Low not
been posted in Swaziland they would have received much less attention.
The USAID is particular grateful for the networking services and
feels that networking results alone justify the project., USAID -also
appreciates the fact that CIMMYT collaboration has been well received
by its contractor. USAID, however, raised two issues one was the
training of sub-professionals in FSR. As of. now CIMMYT training i.s
aimed chiefly at professional level people. The other concerned the
provision for publications in the CIMMYT grant, both publishing and
di strib:ut i on.
The Host Government was grateful for the CIMMYT concept as well
as assistance,. For years it had been recognized that the technology
innovation system was not as affective as needed. Several attempts
had been made through F'AO to address the problem, but with limited
results. CIMMYT seminars :in-country and the administrators workshop
gave an indication of direction in which to go, and the USAID/PSU
project provided a signifant resource with which to move.
One FAO initiative dealt with extension since that is the place
in the system where the problem was manifest. A type of specialist
service was developed as B,.S. level personnel were brought into
Extension for the first time. That group is still functioning and
could be important in the FSR program. Another FAO effort aimed at
establishing a socio-economic unit in research, hut it was never
In the short run the PSU team is virtually the Research Service.
The PSU team has found CIMMYT assistance to be very helpful. After a
seminar with Mike Collinson it did two informal surveys on its own.
They were helpful hut not highly productive. Low helped with a third
survey which the team found to be more helpful. Low is working with
the team in one of the three areas in which it is working. He has
region wide responsibilities, however, and cannot give the timely
attention PSU would like. For example, he helped disign the formal
survey following the informal survey, but timing is such that he was
not available for formal survey analysis and the translation of survey
information to on-farm trials. The Swaziland program presented one
challenge to the CIMMYT system. In one area, an irrigated commercial
(even though small scale) vegetable production was encountered. The
CIMMYT system has been designed for rain fed, food grain-general
production systems on small farms very close to subsistence type.
CIMMYT/PSU are working to adapt the system to this situation and
apparently with success.
PSU feels that CIMMYT collaboration saved them considerable time,,
It provided a concept and set of methodologies with which to start.
Had the team been left to its own resources., it wuuld have had to
devise them. The concepts, methodologies, and limited attention also
helped the team come together around common themes. It is significant
that a group such as the PSU team which certainly was accustomed to
coming to terms with farmers not only found the assistance helpful but
also was willing to accept counsel and was grateful for it.
Although a few Swazis are closely involved in the FSR learning,,
it must be recognized that most of the research service has not been.
Extension has not been integrated into the on-farm trials. It is
kept informed and is provided some in-service training. Some agents
"pick: up quick 1ly" and are cooperat:i.ve.
Persons contacted:: USAID:). Robert Huesman, Director; Jimmy
Phil.pott, Deputy Director FPaul Daley, Agricultural Officer; and Shane
McCarthy, Project Officer.
Pennsylvania State University: Gale Dunn, irrigation agronomist;
Christopher Seubert, agronomist; Tom King, Chief of Party; D.
Grenoble, horti ulturist; Roland Freu.ind, economist.,
Government of Swaziland: Norma Themba, Director of Research
Planning; Frank Buckham, Chief Research Officer; Robert Thwalla,
Senior Agricultural Officer; Basil Maphala, research economist.
Zambia was not visited in the course of this evaluation. These
notes are from an earlier evaluation of a Zambia bilateral project.
The Zambia research organization is larger and better managed
than most. It relies very heavily on expatriates for most technical
work. Only a few Zambians are to be found in the research program and
then only in jun ior positions. There are two exceptions. The
director and chief research officer are Zambian, and they are giving
-hat appears to be exceptional leadership. Evidence of the leadership
is the apparent firm control the leadershipp is exerting to maintain an
internal integrity of the research program in spite of the heavy
reliance on expatriate individuals and on donor agency programs and
support. Another evidence is the way the leadership is handling FSR.
It is firmly committed to implanting FSR and just as firmly committed
that it will be integrated with conventional research program. It is
dealing with five area FSR projects, largely manned by expatriates of
various nationalities and supported by various donors. It is firmly
committed that they will maintain a certain degree of standardization
of direction, concept, and method.,
CIMMYT has played a major role in the Government's arriving at
this position,, dating back to the late 1970's when CIMMYT started work
there. CIMMYT demonstrated its methodological system in the Central
Province and counselled with the Government as it set up the
organization to integrate FSR into the program. The integration is not
complete, but organization and management is aimed at making it so.,
At this point, the Government of Zambia is not disappointed in
its reliance on CIMMYT, and it clearly identifies itself with the
CIMMYT system. However, it recognizes that FSR is not a mature area
of competency and is willing to accept other inputs and to see its own
Currently, CIMMYT is a little more than half way through its
series of calls for trai-ninig,. Many of its trainees are the expatriate
implementers. The University of Illinois FSR team has participated in
the training series, three sessions of which are completed, all in its
area. The team has been grateful for CIMMYT help but acceptance has
varied among members. One Illinois person has been named director of
the area effort even though Zambians are involved. An agronomist, he
values the CIMIMYT assistance very highly and is following the general
We can't report how well informed USAID is regarding the CIMMYT
operation butjudge that if both the Host Government and its contractor
were satisfied USAID would likely be positive.
Two points used to be made from the Zambia case.
1. AID in its grant to CIMMYT is building on to a significant
CIMMYT contribution in Zambia made from previous effort and is taking
advantage of CIMMYT experience and credibility in East Africa.
2. The second point is that CIMMYT has made a major contribution
in institutionalization in Zambia even though the PP indicated not
much was expected in institutionalization in the first two years of
the gi-ant. In the Zambia case, CIMMYT would have had an impact
without the extra resources from AID. It seems reasonable to think
however, that the CIMMYT training and networking under the grant will
be significant in helping implement the Zambia strategy developed with
Zimbabwe is not included directly under the USAID Funding
Agreement, since USAID/Z has no Farming Systems project. However, the
country figures importantly in CIMMYT's program, and it may soon be
eligible for CIMMYT assistance through the University described below.
There has been an active Farming Systems project here since 1980,
the year of Independence. The country was faced with mounting a
program for farmers on the Communal Lands. Zimbabwe has three
classifications of farmers: Those who own land and cultivate more than
200 acres, the large scale commercial; land owners who farm less than
200 acres, the small scale commercial; and those who farm on communal
lands. These are the former Tribal Trust Lands. Farmers do not have
fee-simple title, but they do have secure use rights to areas of
arable land. Grazing lands are held and expl oited in common.,
A farming systems program was started with CIMMYT help and with a
close collaboration between the Research and Specialist services
Division (RSS) of the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry Extension
Service, and the Faculty of Agriculture of the University of Zimbabwe.
CIMMYT provided supervised training for RSS staff and University staff
in an area characterized by uncertain rain f al and relati vely poor
soils. Two years of drouth has not seemed to dampen interest.
In j1982 a second area was opened in a much more promising area.
One technology tested in the new area has generated considerable
farmer interest. It is a minimum tillage technology making use of a
tine, an implement to open a narrow farrow in which grain is planted.
Rationale is that this instrument will greatly decrease the demands
placed on oxen at the beginning of rains, the time they are weakest.
Researchers think that even those farmers not owning oxen will benefit
in that oxen owners will complete their work more rapidly and can hire
their oxen out.
Zimbabwe is adding some elements to the conventional FSR process.
Meetings are held with farmers in planning on-farm trials. The
farmers select the sites for the trials and all are held responsible
for care and maintenance of the plots. This apparently stimulates much
interest. Farmers insisted the researchers discuss the on-farm trial
program after results were in. After only one year of experience
farmer demand for the tine was far beyond supply. RSS will make some
available through extension and anticipates that Extension will make a
repi:ort on its performance this crop cycle.
R3S has also organized a Farming Systems Research Center on a
branch experiment station. Its purpose is n~ t clear. CIMMYT worries,
and with some cause, that it will tend to lead FSR away from the
farmer and the authentic farming systems perspective.
We did not talk to anyone from Extension, but all our Ministry of
Agriculture respondents reported excellent coll aborarion of Extensi on
and a keen extension interest in the program. Also reported was a
growing interest from old-line researchers and plant breeders.
ILCA is interested in working with RSS to open the new areas this
year and will make a livestock officer available to the program.
Zimbabwe is also unusual in the degree to which it insists on
including livestock in FSR.,
They also report great interest from farmers. One meeting has
been held with farmers to report on year's work, largely at the
insistence of farmers who wanted to know what happened.,
The Ministry of Agriculture has kept in touch with CIMMYT from
the beginning and is confident in the CIMMYT work and wants further
CIMMYT attention. Personnel do want more help in dealing with
livestock in the system than CIMMYT offers.
The Faculty of Agriculture, in existence only since independence,
is struggling for its own development. It wants to develop a
research base. The dean, who was formerly head of the Department of
Land Management, which houses economics, soil science, engineering,
and extension, used farming systems as the orienting concept for the
departmental research program. He was one of the first to contact
CIMMYT, and his department collaborated with RSS in the surveys in the
first area. His interest continues and he has an IRDC nrant for an
FSR program in the Zambesi valley.
The Faculty is currently develop ing. a program with USAID that
among other things will provide six expatriate staff:, three for three
years and three -For five years. To the extent that program is
associated with the Zambesi Valley project, it will make Zimbabwe
eligible for CIMMYT attention under the grant.
CIMMYT is also working ,with the Land Management Department to put
on two training sessions a year for the region. The Department's
contribution is largely logistics. CIMMYT and others provide the
staff. The departmental program benefits greatly from this talent.
The future of this program is not certain, and the Dean would like a
little more security of expectations. CIMMYT would like the University
to take more technical responsibility for the training.
Techn iical ly, this training program is not one of the items
included in the CIMMYT grant, but it is so compatible to the purposes
of the grant project that it would be in the Agency's interest to
allow grant funds to be used if needed. We have no direct evidence of
the quality and impact of this training, but we have much indirect
evidence. Many of the leaders of FSR programs in the area have
attended similar courses held in Nairobi.
Our stop in Zimbabwe was very short, and we encountered some
mysteries that could not be cleared up. There seemed to be a great
enthusiasm for FSR, even to the point where one officer expressed fear
that too much was expected.. In spite of this, RSS has no plans to
increase its investment in FSR. In fact the opposite may be true.
The single agronomist assigned to 'FSR also is responsible for the
Farming Systems Development Center, and that will reduce his on-farm
tinie. One officer ex;-plained this lack of investment by a personnel
freeze. Another officer of higher rank, however, said there were ways
ot dealing with the freeze,,. There are no RSS economists availa:-.e to
work in FSR.
In the meantime, the University is increasing its investment and
commitment for FSR. We heard conflicting reports concerning UZ-RSS
No one from Extension was on our schedu..le..
Extension is receiving more attention than research. Apparently,
we were told that there are plans for a great increase in field staff.
We could get no information on plan for research staff development.
Persons Contacted:: Marc Winter, agricultural officer-, USAID;
Phillip Chigaru, director of Research Specialist Services, Ministry of
Agriculture; Ephraim Whingwiri, head of Agronomy Institute, RSS; Enos
Shumba, Agronomy Institute; Malc:olm Blacki:e, dean, Faculty of
Agriculture, University of Zambia; Mandie Rukuni Department of Land
Management, UZ; and Sam Muchena, Deputy Secretary, Ministry of
Southern Africa Development Coordinating Committee
We visited with Carl Eicher of Michigan State University on
assignment to USAID/Zimbabwe as regional agricultural development
officer. He has had little opportunity to view the component of the
CIMMYT program being evaluated. He spends 25 percent of his time in
the Department of Land Management which is responsible for the CIMMYT
training course, but which is not technically a component of the AID
grant program. He offered some observations on that program, but
largely from the viewpoint of institutionalizing it within the
He also described the ICRISAT regional sorghum program to be
sited in Zimbabwe. It provides for an ICRISAT farming systems
economist in year four of the project. That is too far away to be of
any significance for this review.
The SADCC/AID program is now designing a project in grain
legumes, but too little is known about it to anticipate opportunities
SADCC/AID is also organizing the SACCAR (Southern Africa Center
for Cooperation in Agricultural Research) to be sited in Botswana. It
will involve networking among national researchers and can be expected
to provide excellent opportunity for collaboration.