Dec 19, 2014 by Kate Sebastian

HarvestChoice is all over the newly published, Atlas of African Agriculture Research & Development. The atlas highlights the ubiquitous nature of smallholder agriculture in Africa; the many factors shaping the location, nature, and performance of agricultural enterprises; and the strong inter-dependencies among farming, natural resource stocks and flows, rural infrastructure, and the well-being of the poor.

Jul 18, 2014 by Melanie Bacou

As proponents of the open data movement, HarvestChoice works to provide harmonized, spatially referenced biophysical and socio-economic data layers for sub-Saharan Africa. To complement our landscape scale database, HarvestChoice is also leading the effort to capture and geocode the activities of CGIAR centers and sub-regional organizations around the globe.

Jul 9, 2013 by Kate Sebastian

Last March at the Africa Agriculture GIS Week in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, HarvestChoice team member Kate Sebastian presented the not-so-sneak preview of the Atlas of African Agriculture Research and Development.

Apr 24, 2013 by Beliyou Haile

If there is one consensus in agriculture development it is the idea that crops will need to produce more from existing agricultural land in the coming decades. In other words, agriculture will need to be intensified.

Apr 12, 2013 by Jason Beddow

Stem rust is a potentially devastating fungal disease that can kill wheat plants and small grain cereals, but more typically reduces foliage, root growth, and grain yields. The pathogen multiplies rapidly, and its spores can be dispersed by wind over thousands of kilometers.

Photo credit: CIMMYT

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.

Recent spikes in global food prices have garnered much attention, as they did when prices spiked in the early 1970s. But much less policy attention has been placed on the longer-run trends in commodity prices.

Federal and state investments in agricultural research have consistently generated very high social rates of return. Surveys of the hundreds of studies quantifying the returns from agricultural research suggest rates of return in the range of 40–60 percent per year. Our recent work reconfirms that US public investment in agricultural research and development (R&D) has paid off handsomely, with benefit-cost ratios of 20:1 and higher. Nevertheless, for many reasons funding for research targeted at agricultural productivity has stagnated since the early 1980s.

HarvestChoice cofounders and principal investigators Stanley Wood and Philip Pardey discuss our mission, our data challenge, and four signature aspects of our innovative approach to more productive and profitable farming in Sub-Saharan Africa.