How to move from ordinary to best agricultural practices

‘Best practice’ is not even a mouthful but what it means in practice remains unclear to many people who use the phrase. In African agriculture, it takes a lot for a farmer or trader to become a best practitioner.  Most value chain actors face challenges in identifying sufficient quality evidence that can be translated into[…]


Blinkers associated with basing projections on hectares of land

While economists have been schooled into projecting agricultural income starting from the size of the land, such an approach is now found wanting in the knowledge economy. There is no doubt that land is important but valuating natural resources for investment purposes should go beyond hectares of land to the quality of soil and water,[…]

emkambo 2020

The high cost of paying lip service to market research

African smallholder farmers are not the only ones famous for producing commodities before conducting market research. Corporates are not immune to such a disease. Instead of investing in market research, most African corporate companies prefer monopolizing the air waves, bill boards along urban roads and mainstream print media with advertisements. The consequences of such actions[…]

kta 2020

In search of authentic salespeople for African agricultural economies

It is one thing to be blessed with natural resources such as fertile soils and water but quite another to be able to explain and convince investors about opportunities embedded in those resources. Given the intensifying competition for investment and influence, the art of articulating opportunities can no longer be a preserve for government officials[…]

kta 2020

Linear agricultural policy approaches that should not spill over into 2020

A couple of questions can motivate African policy makers to think critically and reflect about possible starting points for transforming African agriculture from 2020 and beyond. There is no longer any doubt that most imported policy recommendations have failed to fully develop African economies. To that end, as 2020 beckons African agricultural economists and policy[…]


Comparative analysis of imported knowledge and indigenous knowledge

Due to continuous dependence on imported western knowledge, most African countries have not invested in understanding their own local knowledges. For instance, while these countries continue to lament that they do not have foreign currency and advanced technologies, they are not taking time to reflect and compare what they have in abundance with what they[…]

charles dhewa

Yes, Indigenous Knowledge Systems have a distinct flavor

Some intellectuals have been suggesting that knowledge is the same everywhere, so it is wrong to speak in terms of indigenous knowledge as if is distinct from all other knowledges. Such views are far from the reality on the ground. There is definitely a difference between knowledge found in academic circles and ordinary people’s knowledge[…]