Conference Objectives and Expected Outcomes

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Background

The Regional Strategic Analysis and Knowledge Support System (ReSAKSS) supports efforts to promote evidence-based policy planning and implementation as part of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP). In particular, ReSAKSS provides data and knowledge products to facilitate CAADP benchmarking, review, and mutual learning. It is facilitated by the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), in partnership with the African Union Commission (AUC), the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NPCA), and leading regional economic communities (RECs). At the regional level, ReSAKSS is supported by three Africa-based CGIAR centers: the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) in Kenya, International Water Management Institute (IWMI) in South Africa, and International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) in Nigeria.

As the main platform for monitoring CAADP implementation, ReSAKSS tracks progress of core CAADP indicators through an interactive website and its flagship Annual Trends and Outlook Reports (ATORs). In addition, ReSAKSS provides technical support for the establishment of country level Strategic Analysis and Knowledge Support Systems (SAKSS) in order to create the required capacities to meet data and knowledge needs of CAADP at the national level. To  date,  12 country SAKSS platforms have been established. As part of its support for review and mutual accountability processes, ReSAKSS in collaboration with country stakeholders, AUC, NPCA, and other development partners, have been facilitating the adoption of agriculture joint sector  reviews (JSRs) that  are more comprehensive in coverage, more inclusive in terms of participation, and more technically robust. Over the last 3 years, assessments of JSR efforts have been conducted in about 30 countries and one REC–the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)–to evaluate the institutional and policy landscape and the quality of current agricultural review processes and to develop action plans for improving or establishing best-practice JSRs. ECOWAS is pioneering the establishment of a JSR at the regional level, and its experience will serve as model for other RECs.

Objectives

IFPRI, in partnership with AUC, is convening the 2016 ReSAKSS Annual Conference to promote review and dialogue on the CAADP implementation agenda among policymakers, development partners, researchers, advocacy groups, farmers’ organizations, private sector, and other key stakeholders from within and outside Africa. The conference will take place at the Labadi Beach Hotel in Accra, Ghana on 18-20 October, 2016. The theme of the conference is “Achieving a Nutrition Revolution for Africa: The Road to Healthier Diets and Optimal Nutrition.”

More specifically, the conference seeks to:

  1. Discuss important issues raised and related recommendations of the 2015 ATOR—the official CAADP monitoring and evaluation (M&E) The 2015 ATOR examines challenges and opportunities on linking agriculture and food systems to nutrition and how various nutrition initiatives can be leveraged for more rapid progress.
  2. Review progress in implementing the CAADP agenda and in particular, progress toward achieving key CAADP goals and targets as well as in creating capacities and adopting effective modalities for evidence-based policy planning and
  3. Evaluate progress and challenges in establishing and operationalizing effective country SAKSS platforms and mutual accountability platforms through agriculture joint sector reviews (JSRs).

Each year, ReSAKSS produces an Africawide ATOR—the official CAADP M&E report. The ATOR assesses trends and progress on CAADP core indicators and also presents analysis on a feature topic of strategic importance to the CAADP implementation agenda. The 2015 ATOR focuses on the current nutrition situation for Africa and related opportunities and challenges.

Several AUC initiatives such as, the CAADP Nutrition Initiative, Africa Region Nutrition Strategy 2015-2025 (ARNS 2015-2025), Africa Task Force on Food and Nutrition Development, African Union (AU) 2014-2017 Strategic Plan, AU Agenda 2063, and the Malabo Declaration 2014, have generated momentum towards improving food security and nutrition for all in Africa. In addition, 37 out of 57 (65 percent) countries involved in the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement are African. The CAADP process has included efforts by countries led by NPCA and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and other development partners toward mainstreaming nutrition in national agriculture and food security investment plans (NAIPs). This is synergistic to efforts being made by the country-led SUN movement and country level SUN and CAADP teams are expected to work collaboratively toward improved nutrition.

Through CAADP efforts at country level, progress has been made on increasing budget allocations to the agriculture sector with positive results observed on increased production and productivity. Recent interventions on several fronts have led to some progress on nutrition indicators such as stunting, and wasting but the pace at which this is happening needs to be accelerated to meet the Malabo Declaration targets of reducing child stunting to 10 percent and underweight children to 5 percent by 2025.

In light of the above, the 2015 ATOR examines challenges and opportunities on linking agriculture and food systems to nutrition and how the various initiatives could be better leveraged for more rapid progress on nutrition in support of Africa’s development agenda. The Report will also benchmark the current nutrition situation in Africa with respect to specific indicators of relevance to the CAADP implementation agenda. As in previous ATORs, the Report will assesses progress toward CAADP goals and the Malabo Declaration commitments using the 2015-2025 CAADP Results Framework.

Expected Outcomes

Expected outcomes of the conference are:

  1. Shared understanding of the latest evidence on:
    1. Nutrition status of Africa, how challenges can be addressed and opportunities can be leveraged for better nutrition outcomes to meet set nutrition targets for countries and the
    2. Actions needed to further advance the CAADP implementation agenda and ensure the achievement of its goals and objectives;
    3. How ReSAKSS can best support the CAADP implementation agenda, and in particular the CAADP Results
  2. Shared lessons and experiences regarding:
    1. Planning and execution of agriculture JSRs, in particular critical success factors and required steps in transitioning to more comprehensive, inclusive, and robust JSR modalities and preparing for biennial reviews.
    2. The establishment and operation of country SAKSS platforms, to mobilize local centers of expertise to support technical analyses, review, and dialogue processes in support of CAADP implementation.

Structure of the Conference

Day 1, October 18: The morning will consist of side events taking place in parallel sessions. The side events will provide space for ReSAKSS partners and other development partners to share their research and other work as it relates to supporting evidence-based policy planning and implementation under the CAADP agenda. Topics for side events will also relate to the conference theme of nutrition. The conference will be officially opened in the afternoon of Day 1, which will feature a high-level keynote address and high- level panel discussion on the conference theme.

Day 2, October 19: The day will focus on presentation and discussion of the different chapters of the 2015 ATOR.

Day 3, October 20: The day will continue with presentations and discussions of the 2015 ATOR and then turn to ReSAKSS core activities of supporting evidence and outcome based policy planning and implementation under CAADP. It will include presentations and discussions of progress on and required actions for establishing and operationalizing agriculture JSRs and country SAKSS platforms.