Last month I was honored to visit Stanford as a featured speaker at their Global Food Policy and Food Security Symposium Series. I shared the bill with Prabhu Pingali, Deputy Director for Agriculture Development at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, who has been critical to helping guide and advance our work at HarvestChoice.

We just received a copy of the video, courtesy of the Stanford's Center for Food Security and the Environment. PDFs of our presentations can be found here.

Following an introduction by FSE Director Rosamond Naylor, Prabhu's talk begins around 6:30. Mine begins at 45:30, and there's a Q&A at 1:40:00. Given the nature of Vimeo, you may need to allow the video to load much of the way before you can queue to these points.

(This a very long video, and in the original the audio sync is very slightly off -- a problem exacerbated by this more compressed streaming version, depending on your Internet connection. If it starts to get to you, you may wish to open the higher-quality original, here.)

Here's the abstract for my talk:

Given the continuing importance of agriculture in most African economies, an in-depth understanding of the past and likely future productivity performance of African agriculture is key to assessing the overall economic growth and development prospects of the region. African agriculture operates in increasingly interconnected global commodity markets, so the relative productivity performance of Africa vis-à-vis rest-of-world agriculture is also relevant. This talk will present new evidence on African agricultural productivity performance and place that evidence in relation to the evolving pattern of agricultural productivity growth worldwide. Technological change is a principal driver of productivity growth, and new, updated evidence on the trends in R&D investments that give rise to these technological changes will also be presented and discussed. The productivity effects of R&D play out over comparatively long periods of time demanding a long-run look at these developments.