On May 2016, the PARM team traveled to Ethiopia for a workshop on Information Systems and a series of meetings with the Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency on the Risk Assessment Study and to identify potential tools to manage agricultural risks in the country.
Agricultural development in Ethiopia is threatened by vulnerability of farming households to various risks as a result of which investments in long term development can be undermined by considerations of short term shocks and expectations of disasters. To achieve the Government of Ethiopia’s ambitious developmental targets for the agricultural sector, it is therefore important to include initiatives for better management of agricultural risks as part the strategic approach to supporting sectoral development.
The PARM process started in Ethiopia in 2014, and in December 2015, the PARM Secretariat, the Agricultural Transformation Agency (ATA) and NEPAD organized a National Stakeholder Validation workshop, which brought together 75 participants from a significant group of organizations and development partners, public and private, from farmers, financial institutions, service providers and research. The discussions during this workshop allowed to advance in the identification and assessment of agricultural risks in Ethiopia on the basis of the draft risk assessment report. The outcomes of these discussions were then integrated in a new version of the risk assessment report, which was discussed with ATA during this mission. Additionally, PARM organized a technical meeting on Information Systems to present the results of a study undertaken by CEIGRAM on Information Systems in Ethiopia.
Risk Assessment Report
The PARM team met with key stakeholders and officials from ATA to finalize the Risk Assessment Study, which was presented for the first time in Addis in December 2015. The rich discussion on the content of the study led to an understanding of the last steps required to finalize the study, which will be published shortly as a collaborative work between PARM and ATA.
This mission was also the opportunity for PARM to meet with stakeholders and discuss potential tools that could be assessed and later on used in Ethiopia to manage the identified risks. Meetings with ATA and the Ministry of Agriculture on topics such as extension services or social protection represented a first step towards the complete tools assessment which will be undertaken in the coming months.
Technical Meeting on Information Systems
Finally, PARM organized a technical meeting on Information Systems for Agricultural Risk Management in Addis on 31 May 2016, in partnership with ATA and NEPAD, to present the results of a study on on information systems across six countries in sub-Saharan Africa, including Ethiopia, that was undertaken by the Research Centre for the Management of Agricultural and Environmental Risks (CEIGRAM, Spain).
The objective of the workshop was to share the main findings of the study conducted by CEIGRAM on Ethiopia with the technical experts and stakeholders contributing to each of the thematic blocks to collect feedback for improvements.
More precisely, experts were asked to highlight eventual gaps or omissions in the study, and to provide recommendations for the improvement of information systems based on the results of CEIGRAM’s work.
Following this mission, the Risk Assessment Study will be finalized and published in the coming months. Similarly, the Study on Information Systems will be updated to reflect the outcomes of the technical meeting. Ethiopia will then move on to the third phase of the PARM process, the Tools Assessment Phase.