A food secure southern Africa free from hunger and poverty.
To promote effective Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources (FANR) policies by:
- Facilitating linkages and partnerships between government and civil society,
- Building the capacity for policy analysis and policy dialogue in southern Africa, and supporting demand-driven policy research and analysis.
FANRPAN is a regional policy research and advocacy network whose operations are informed by major regional policy frameworks and processes in Southern Africa. These are currently the SADC's Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP), the SADC Heads of State Dar es Salaam Declaration, the Comprehensive Africa Agricultural Development Programme (CAADP) of the New Partnership for Agricultural Development (NEPAD) and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA Agricultural Plan. At the international level, after decades of declining support, there is renewed hope that development agencies will pay more attention. One of the elements of that hope is the World Development Report 2008 which is dedicated to "Agriculture for Development' and emphasises the importance of agricultural productivity growth in Africa for stimulating growth, overcoming poverty, and enhancing food security.
The FANRPAN Network
The strength of FANRPAN lies in its national nodes. FANRPAN is currently operating in 14 countries in Africa and soon to establish nodes in east Africa and operates through an inter-sectoral network platform in each country designated as a Country Node. The node comprises of the following stakeholders:
Each country node is served by a hosting institution which provides a secretariat and coordination services. The node hosting institution is supported by a steering committee. The node hosting institution is selected on the basis of the following factors:
- Government ministries responsible for FANR;
- Policy research institutions such as relevant university departments;
- Private sector national umbrella organizations which deal with FANR;
- National farmers' organizations; and
- Civil Society organizations.
FANRPAN Scale and Scope
- its ability to engage with a wide range of stakeholders, including good relations with government;
- its ability to convene high level policy engagements with all key stakeholders;
- its staff and their ability to maintain good communications with stakeholders and the rest of FANRPAN; and
- Its capacity to secure and effectively manage grants and contracts on behalf of FANRPAN.
In addition to these formal tools, FANRPAN has been reinforcing the scale and scope of its informal networks through:
- The incorporation of new, "non-traditional" stakeholders such as:
- Parliamentarians who can help increase the political importance of agriculture in the region and influence the translation of FANRPAN policy recommendations into policy decisions;
- Media professionals who can contribute to the sensitization of policymakers and key stakeholders on critical policy issues, the intake of strategic agricultural development issues on national and regional policy agendas, attract and maximize attention of the general public to current and emerging agricultural development issues
- Customer groups (in 2008)
- The creation of an environment (e.g. at the annual policy dialogues) conducive to extroverted attitudes, especially by disadvantaged groups such as small farmers and women
- The reduction of communication barriers between policymakers, researchers and civil society
- Sharing of information and knowledge among members and stakeholders through conventional and ICT based tools
- Direct contacts with senior decision-makers and other policy actors which have contributed to mutual trust and allowed FANRPAN to access information and better understand their perceptions, constraints and needs.
- A well designed website that is regularly updated and has become an important information hub on agricultural related issues.
FANRPAN works through partnerships. FANRPAN has established formal partnership agreements with nearly twenty national and international organizations, spanning from farmer organisations (e.g. SACAU and the Eastern Africa farmers federation (EAFF), to the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIARs) (ICRISAT, IWMI, IFPRI), national universities and regional coordinating bodies (RUFORUM). FANRPAN leverages this network to deliver unbiased, high quality policy dialogue and analyses, particularly on broad trends and cross - country issues that are of significance for the entire region.
- Policymakers and their advisers at national (Governments and Parliaments), regional (including SADC and COMESA) and continental levels (NEPAD/CAADP)
- Leadership and advisors in farmers', agri-business and civil society organisations
- Policy researchers.
Policy Research Approach
- Biophysical and social scientists with an interest in agriculture and rural economy
- Other ACP organisations and networks
- Representatives of international organisations and diplomatic missions
- The general public.
FANRPAN policy research studies, are undertaken by FANRPAN nodes and their participating institutions, as well as information and knowledge from other national, regional, continental and international partners. The activities are coordinated by the FANRPAN Secretariat both at regional and national (node hosting institutions).
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