Feed aggregator

Understanding gender roles in small ruminant health management in Ethiopia

CRP 3.7 News -

According to female farmers in Ethiopia ‘Sheep are like fast growing cabbage in the homestead’. A recent poster illustrates the significance of small ruminants for men and women in Ethiopia. Scientists observed gendered differences in perceptions of disease, as well as responsibilities for rearing of animals (read a related blog post).

Download the poster: Wieland, B. 2016. Understanding gender roles in small ruminant health management in Ethiopia. Poster. Nairobi, Kenya: ILRI.


Filed under: Animal Diseases, Animal Health, ASSP, CRP37, East Africa, Ethiopia, Gender, Goats, ILRI, Livestock, Research, Sheep, Small Ruminants, Value Chains

Improving breastfeeding practices for better nutrition and health

CRP 4 program news -

A health care worker provides breastfeeding support to a mother at a local clinic in Vietnam set up by the Alive & Thrive program.

A health care worker provides breastfeeding support to a mother at a local clinic in Vietnam set up by the Alive & Thrive program.

To mark World Breastfeeding Week 2016 (Aug. 1-7), IFPRI researchers, Phuong Nguyen, Sunny Kim, and Purnima Menon, share evidence from the A4NH-supported Alive & Thrive program in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, and Vietnam that shows how scaling up good breastfeeding practices can lead to improved nutrition and health. Cross-posted with permission from the IFPRI website.

Research shows that exclusive breastfeeding improves child growth and development, reduces infant mortality from common childhood illnesses such as diarrhea or pneumonia, and helps mothers recover quicker from childbirth, as well as providing other health and emotional benefits to both mothers and children. That’s why the World Health Organization recommends that mothers worldwide exclusively breastfeed infants during their first six months, and continue until they reach two years or older with appropriate complementary feeding.

However, in developing countries, the first months of infancy pose particular obstacles; only 39 percent of infants are exclusively breastfed to six months of age.

Why do so many mothers struggle to breastfeed in the first months of infancy? During that time, they face a barrage of challenges: Finding time to breastfeed during their daily chores, refraining from giving something other than breast milk to placate or distract a fussy baby, returning to work, difficulties with pumping breast milk, having to discourage family members or elders from feeding the baby, etc. To overcome these obstacles, efforts to promote and support this essential and cheap life-saving practice must be continuous and comprehensive, reaching families, communities, and policy-makers.

A program called Alive & Thrive (A&T) has achieved positive results promoting infant and young child feeding (IYCF) in rural communities during this crucial six-month period and throughout the first two years of an infant’s life in three countries: Bangladesh, Ethiopia, and Vietnam. IFPRI closely tracked the performance of A&T from 2010 to 2014. During that time, the program reached more than 16 million children under two years old, and developed large-scale program models that can be replicated most anywhere in the world.

In the three countries, A&T worked with government and non-governmental partners and through existing health systems to deliver a comprehensive package of interventions—including counseling and communication, community mobilization, and media outreach targeted at policymakers.

In Bangladesh, A&T formed a national IYCF alliance with 25 partners, including the Institute of Public Health Nutrition, government agencies, and NGOs. BRAC, the Bangladesh-based global NGO, ran interventions in 50 rural sub-districts through its national Essential Health Care program. BRAC workers regularly visited the homes of pregnant women and mothers with children up to two years old to provide age-targeted IYCF counseling and encourage other family members to support the mother’s efforts. The BRAC workers advised community leaders about IYCF and held community demonstrations. Seven TV spots about good IYCF practices were broadcast nationally. The program also established a capacity-building program for journalists, and held national and district-level meetings and workshops for opinion leaders. An IFPRI analysis showed that in intensive intervention areas, exclusive breastfeeding rates increased from 49 to 88 percent over four years (in areas with less intensive programs, the effect was less pronounced).

In Ethiopia, breastfeeding rates are higher than in Bangladesh or in Vietnam, but overall IYCF practices are still poor. A&T provided information and counseling to mothers and caregivers primarily through the Federal Ministry of Health’s flagship Health Extension Program throughout Ethiopia’s four most populous regions: Amhara, Oromia, SNNPR, and Tigray, using its large network of female health extension workers and teams of community health volunteers. They held village gatherings to discuss breastfeeding and demonstrate how to prepare nutritious complementary foods. A&T also partnered with various NGOs, faith-based organizations, and women’s associations to launch a radio campaign. Early initiation of breastfeeding there increased from 67 to 82 percent, while exclusive breastfeeding rates rose significantly from 72 to 83 percent.

Vietnam is a rapidly industrializing country with stubbornly low breastfeeding rates. There, A&T worked with the Ministry of Health, the National Institute of Nutrition, UNICEF and other agencies. Implementing partnerSave the Children worked with the government to establish 1,032 “social franchises” in clinics, hospitals, and other health facilities in 15 of the country’s 63 provinces. The franchises provided individual and group counseling sessions from the third trimester of pregnancy until children turned two. A&T also worked with partners to strengthen two national policies: the Labor Code, which governs paid maternity leave, and the Advertisement Law, which governs the marketing of breast milk substitutes. A media campaign also promoted behavior change via TV spots, loud speakers, and digital media. In intensive intervention areas, exclusive breastfeeding rates increased threefold from 19 to 58 percent, less so in non-intensive areas.

Further study is needed to understand what happens to children who are not exclusively breastfed, and how to increase reach and sustain behavior change over time and across generations. But intervention programs such as A&T demonstrate that a comprehensive approach to improve breastfeeding practices can be delivered with impact and at scale in different contexts worldwide.

Phuong Nguyen and Sunny Kim are Research Fellows and Purnima Menon a Senior Research Fellow in IFPRI’s Poverty, Health and Nutrition Division. Nguyen is based at the Alive & Thrive (A&T) office in Hanoi, Kim in Washington, D.C., and Menon in New Delhi.

The Africa Biosciences Challenge Fund 2016/2017 Call for Applications (new guidelines)

Beca news -

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The Biosciences eastern and central Africa - International Livestock Research Institute (BecA-ILRI) Hub, located in Nairobi, Kenya, is a shared agricultural research and biosciences platform that exists to increase access for African researchers to affordable, world-class research facilities.  The mission of the BecA-ILRI Hub is Mobilizing Bioscience for Africa’s Development by providing a centre for excellence in agricultural biosciences, which enables research, capacity building and product incubation, conducted by scientists in Africa and for Africa, and empowers African institutions to harness innovations for regional impact. This mission is achieved by the BecA–ILRI Hub’s contributions to:

  • Research: enabling research to harness the potential of the biosciences to contribute to increasing agricultural productivity and to improving food and nutritional safety and security.
  • Education: contributing to the education and training of the next generation of African agricultural research leaders and scientists.
  • Innovation: promoting the development, delivery and adoption of new technologies to address key agricultural productivity constraints.

The BecA-ILRI Hub capacity building program is branded The Africa Biosciences Challenge Fund (ABCF).The ABCF program operates in the critically important intersection between agricultural research for development (ARD), food security, and individual and institutional capacity building. The ABCF program is delivered through: i) a visiting scientist program (the ABCF fellowship) targeting scientists from African national agricultural research organizations and universities to undertake biosciences research-for-development projects at the BecA-ILRI Hub; ii) annual training workshops to support the acquisition of practical skills in molecular biology, genomics, bioinformatics, laboratory management, laboratory safety, equipment maintenance and scientific writing; iii) mobilizing national and regional capacities for joint action; and iv) supporting and strengthening the capacity of national agricultural research systems  (NARS) to deliver on their research for development agenda.

Purpose

The purpose of the ABCF fellowship program is to develop capacity for agricultural biosciences research in Africa, to support research for development projects that ultimately contribute towards increasing food and nutritional security and/or food safety in Africa, and to facilitate access to the BecA-ILRI Hub facilities by African researchers (and their partners).  We seek applicants with innovative ideas for short to medium term research projects (up to 12 months) aligned with national, regional or continental agricultural development priorities that can be undertaken at the BecA-ILRI Hub.

Since its inception in 2010, the ABCF program has contributed to strengthening capacities of individual scientists and institutions in sub Saharan Africa. To enable national programs take full advantage of the opportunities available through the ABCF program, prospective candidates will require full support from their home institution. Institutions are strongly encouraged to nominate staff and faculty members for the ABCF program to help address critical capacity gaps or tackle key agricultural research for development challenges. Letters of  nominations articulating institutions capacity building needs and alignment of the proposed research project to national priorities will constitute an important criteria for selection.

Areas of research

Applicants must be scientists affiliated (through employment) with African National Agricultural Research Systems (NARS) e.g. national agricultural research institutes and universities, and conducting research in the areas of food and nutritional security or food safety in Africa. Those carrying out research in the following areas are particularly encouraged to apply*;

  • Improved control of priority livestock and fish diseases including: African Swine Fever (ASF); Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia (CBPP) and Contagious Caprine Pleuropneumonia (CCPP); Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR); Rift Valley Fever (RVF); East Coast Fever (ECF); Capripox Virus diseases of ruminants;
  • Harnessing genetic diversity for conservation, resistance to disease and improving productivity of crops and livestock and fish (livestock focus: African indigenous breeds, particularly  goats, chickens, alternative small livestock species);
  • Molecular breeding for important food security crops in Africa;
  • Plant transformation to address food insecurity in Africa;
  • Plant-microbe interactions;
  • Tissue culture and virus indexing for production of virus-free planting materials in Africa;
  • Orphan/underutilized species of crops and livestock
  • Crop pests, pathogens and weed management research, including biological control;
  • Microbial technology for improving adaptation of staple food crops and forages to biotic and abiotic stresses;
  • Rapid diagnostics for crop, livestock and fish diseases;
  • Genomics, bioinformatics and  metagenomics including microbial discovery;
  • Studies on climate-smart forage grasses and mixed livestock-crop systems;
  • Microbial technology for improving adaptation of staple food crops and forages to biotic and abiotic stresses;
  • Soil health in agricultural systems.
  • Improved control of parasitic pathogens of plants (bacteria, fungi, oomycetes) that cause enormous economic losses as well as environmental damage in natural ecosystems (e.g.: Phytophthora infestans that causes potato blight). 

*This list is not exhaustive and applicants working on other relevant topics are welcome to submit their suggestions.

Special opportunities also exist to connect with leading international scientists linked with the BecA-ILRI Hub in the following areas: wheat rusts, insect pests, and nitrogen fixation. Other special opportunities exist to connect with CGIAR Research Programs (CRPs): including but not limited to Livestock & Fish, Agriculture for Nutrition and Health, Humid tropics etc.  Such collaboration would allow the applicant’s research to contribute more directly to an impact-oriented research-for-development agenda, and offer additional opportunities for joint activities.

 Eligibility/applicant requirements
  • National of a BecA-ILRI Hub target country for this call: Burundi, Central African Republic, Congo Brazzaville, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Gabon, Madagascar, São Tomé and Príncipe, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan. Under special partnerships and collaborations arrangements, applicants from western and Southern Africa are considered for the fellowship. . The applicant MUST be a researcher employed within NARS.
  • Currently engaged in research in food and nutritional security or food safety in Africa, or in a research area with relevance to agriculture in Africa.
  •  Good working knowledge of written and spoken English.
  • Completed online application form.
  • A signed letter of endorsement / nomination of the application from the head of the applicant’s home institute/organization/university faculty.

Applicants stand a higher chance of acceptance to the program if:

  • They have own funding to fully support their research and all other costs while at the BecA-ILRI Hub, or
  • They are able to secure a significant portion (at least 50%) of their total research budget and other necessary costs while at the BecA-ILRI Hub. In this case they would be seeking partial funding through application for an ABCF fellowship.

 We particularly welcome applications from women and less resourced NARS.

What the fellowship covers

The BecA-ILRI Hub has secured funding to sponsor several fellowships on a highly competitive basis. The fellowship will cover the following costs[1];

  • Research costs at the BecA-ILRI Hub;
  • Travel;
  • Medical insurance;
  • Accommodation;
  • A modest subsistence allowance;
  • Cost of publication in open access journal.

Key timelines

  • For any inquiries / clarifications related to this call, please send an email to: abcfprogram (at) cgiar.org
  • Closing date for applications: Applications will be accepted on an on-going basis until 30th June 2017.
  • Notification to successful applicants and commencement of successful projects will be on continuing basis.

Application form

To apply for a fellowship, click on the online application link below:

Link to application form: http://hpc.ilri.cgiar.org/beca/training/ABCF_2016/index.html 

Decision on applications

Details of successful applicants will be posted on the BecA-ILRI Hub Website on a continuous basis until completion of the review process.

Note: Successful applicants will be expected to secure leave from their workstation to fully focus on their research fellowship at BecA-ILRI Hub during the fellowship contract period.

Our Sponsors

The ABCF Research Fellowship program is supported by the Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture (SFSA), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), the UK Department for International Development (DFID), the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs through the Swedish International Development Agency (Sida), and the Australian Government through a partnership between Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) and the BecA-ILRI Hub,

For general information on the BecA-ILRI Hub visit http://hub.africabiosciences.org/aboutbeca. For information on the technologies and research-related services available at the BecA-ILRI Hub visit http://hub.africabiosciences.org/activities/services

A full prospectus of the BecA-ILRI Hub is available for download here. 

Download a full prospectus on the ABCF program here.

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[1]Please note that BecA-ILRI Hub-funded fellowships do not cover the cost of fieldwork or research at the applicant’s home institute. Applicants who can fund their  proposed research at BecA-ILRI Hub (either fully or partially) will have  added advantage.  

Saudi livestock market requirements, implications for Somaliland

Clippings -

Cattle in quarantine awaiting export to Middle East from Berbera port, Somaliland

Cattle for export to Middle East from Somaliland (photo credit: ILRI/Peter Ballantyne).

Livestock are the backbone of the Somaliland economy. Livestock production accounts for about 60% of the country’s gross domestic product, 70% of employment opportunities and 85% of export earnings, and about 15% of total government revenue. Despite being Somaliland’s biggest livestock export market, little is known about marketing channels, grading and pricing of Somaliland livestock in Saudi Arabia. A recent research report, ‘Saudi Arabia end-market requirements and the implications for Somaliland livestock exports’, sheds a light on these key issues and how they affect Somaliland exporters.

The report found two main trading channels: the sacrificial value chain and the commercial value chain. The sacrificial value chain is active during the lunar months associated with Hajj and Umra pilgrim movements and other religious occasions when livestock demand is high, while the commercial value chain is dominant during the lunar months of Muharram to Jamadul Akhir, in which livestock demand is much lower.

Grading and pricing systems differ between the two chains. In the commercial value chain, grading and pricing somewhat mirrors what happens in the Somaliland source market. The key difference is that livestock are clustered in three grades in the Somaliland market, these are collapsed into two upon arrival in Saudi Arabia.

The report found that livestock landing as grade I were sold almost immediately. The other grades were held at fattening yards for varying periods and collectively sold as grade II. In this commercial chain, superior grades received premium prices.

Conversely, in the sacrificial value chain, while animals are procured on the basis of the three grades in Somaliland, they are graded on the basis of religious practices specifying the type of animals that can be slaughtered for Hajj, and all are priced uniformly. The sacrificial value chain operates in accordance with rules of tender established by the Islamic Development Bank—specifying the number of livestock to be delivered (sheep and goats) and the selling price of each animal—so as to make sacrificial animals affordable to most pilgrims.

However, the overall volumes demand for slaughter stock often exceeds volumes delivered through the sacrificial value chain. The extra demand is filled by getting animals delivered through the commercial value chain where forces of demand determine the price. During this period, sheep are preferred over goats and by extension are sold at a premium price in the commercial value chain.

The sacrificial value chain seemed to favour Somaliland exporters, first due to non-discrimination against goats, the dominant species in Somaliland, and secondly, by waiving the grading requirement. This provided room for more goats of lower quality (grade III) to be exported. Since these benefits of procuring goats at relatively low prices and selling them at better prices were not transferred to producers, one may thus intuitively conclude that the sacrificial value chain offers an opportunity to participating traders to build their capital base and dominate the export market.

Furthermore, it was observed that margins realized by Somaliland exporter–Saudi importer partnerships were relatively low for small ruminants (18–30%) and poor (below 10%) for camels. Low margins in live animal trade imply that the trade is fraught with risks, such that mortality in transit leads to a severe erosion of the profit earned by those actors involved.

Overall, Somaliland sheep and goats were noted to be smaller and of lower weight than those from competing countries and thus served a market niche for lower/middle income consumers. Somaliland, particularly, has comparative advantage in the supply of goats where it commands up to 85% of the market share. This is a strength that should be exploited, especially in off-peak season, which apparently offer better prices for goats and of which producers should be made aware.

The report was produced by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), Terra Nuova (TN) and the IGAD Sheikh Technical Veterinary School (ISTVS). Various Somaliland livestock exporters and their Saudi partners provided information that facilitated the assessment. Funding was provided by the Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA) and the CGIAR Research Program on Policies, Institutions and Markets (PIM).

For more information download the report.


Filed under: Animal Products, CRP2, ILRI, Livestock, Middle East, PTVC, Report, Research, Somalia, Trade Tagged: DANIDA, ISTVS, Terra Nuova

The hand that cares and feeds: India’s unnatural ‘natural’ caretakers of livestock

News from ILRI -

Sanjiv's mother, who insisted in keeping the family cows in the family business

Indian women—unnatural ‘natural’ caretakers of livestock (photo credit: ILRI/Jules Mateo)

Note: This is the twelfth and final article in a twelve-part series on
‘Curds and goats, lives and livelihoods—
A dozen stories from northern and eastern India’.
PART 12: The hand that cares and feeds:
India’s unnatural ‘natural’ caretakers of livestock
By Jules Mateo
International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI)
To awaken the people,
it is the women who must be awakened.
Once she is on the move, the family moves,
the village moves, the nation moves.
—Jawaharlal Nehru, first Prime Minister of India

This quote above appears on signage above a doorway at the Central Institute for Women in Agriculture (CIWA), an organization operating under the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and located in Bhubaneswar, the capital of India’s eastern state of Odisha. A delegation from the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), based in Africa, paid a visit to CIWA and took part in its celebration of International Women’s Day on 8 March 2016.

DSC_4472_Bhubaneswar_CIWA_GroupPhoto6_RaisedHands

The ILRI team and ICAR officials and staff at the 2016 International Women’s Day celebration at the Central Institute for Women in Agriculture, in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India (photo credit: ILRI/Susan MacMillan).

After undertaking a multi-state, communications-related trip in India 3–14 Mar 2016, I could not help but wonder if Jawaharlal Nehru, as quoted above, had got it wrong. All the women farmers the ILRI team met in Delhi and the towns and villages and farms of Haryana and Odisha were on the move, tireless and persevering. Some may have appeared as unassuming as they were confident, but all appeared most definitely ‘awake’.

This opinion piece is based on my observations throughout this field trip. I cannot speak for Indian women (I’m a Filipino), but I found it admirable how many of the women farmers we met in the towns of Karnal, Mayurbhanj and Bhadrak take on the role of caretakers and nurturers of their animals and their families, how they have ‘a confident sense of [their] own purpose and usefulness’, as my communications colleague put it in an earlier article in this series.

I was impressed by how much India’s women food producers make the most out of their situations, how often they thrive in what they do despite constraints, how few view themselves as victims of their circumstances, how often, and with what assurance and purposefulness, they exercise agency.

Indian women farmers and the feminist concept of ‘ethic of care’
Women are often believed to be ‘natural’ caretakers and nurturers by nature. Expressions such as ‘maternal instincts’ and ‘mother hen’ are often associated with women who are demonstrably protective of the welfare of their families. Women are also commonly believed to be more empathic and responsive than men. While caring is often seen as a feminine rather than masculine trait, some feminist theorists claim that this is due largely to the feminization of labour, particularly of ‘care work’.

Carol Gilligan, for example, has found a way to reclaim caring as ‘ethic of care’—as a form of ‘resistance to injustices and inequality inherent in a patriarchal society’. Whether knowingly or not, the women livestock farmers we met in India appeared to me to be doing a fine job of putting such ethics into practice.

In a village in the outskirts of Karnal, in India’s northern Haryana state, we met Rita, mother of Sanjiv, owner of a dairy-based company, a mushroom farm and several other agricultural businesses. Years ago, Sanjiv told us, the dairy business was not doing well and he was ready to discontinue producing dairy products and concentrate on his more profitable ventures. But Rita convinced him to keep the buffaloes and promised she would take care of the animals herself.

Sanjiv's mother, who insisted in keeping the family cows in the family business

A woman in Haryana, India, tends to her family’s milk cows and buffaloes (ILRI/Jules Mateo).

True enough, when we went to their family home, we found Rita standing in a lot across from their house, watching over several large milk buffaloes, dutifully performing the task she promised to do to help the family business.

Some form of ‘ethic of care’ also appeared to be demonstrated by women goatkeepers of Mayurbhanj, in the eastern state of Odisha. Their caring attitude towards their goats while out herding the animals showed in the way they watched over them, never shouting at them but herding them gently, as though they were pets rather than livestock raised to be sold or slaughtered at a later date. Back home, the women fed and housed the goats right in their courtyards, enjoying their company, ensuring the animals’ comfort and seeing immediately to any animals that appeared to be ailing.

Goat lives and livelihoods in Mayurbhanj, Odisha, India

A woman in Odisha, India, herds goats near a forested area in Mayurbhanj (ILRI/Susan Macmillan).

Mayurbhanj goat farmers

The goat keepers of Mayurbhanj treat their farm animals like extended family (ILRI/Jules Mateo).

Agency as a feminist concept and the enterprising women farmers of Odisha
‘Agency’ refers to one’s ability to act for one’s self, a capacity for independent choice and action.

From a gender perspective, feminist writers Sonya Andermahr, Terry Lovell and Carol Wolkowitz define agency in their book A glossary of feminist theory (2000) as essentially involving self-determination, one’s ability to act in the world on one’s own terms—to be active, not passive. Female agency, they argue, often involves acting in accordance with one’s concerns, needs and wants despite restraints prevalent in a patriarchal and male-dominated society.

I saw what appeared to me to be this type of agency during our trip to Bhadrak, in northern Odisha, when we made several stops to visit dairy value chain actors in the town. First was a female paravet businesswoman running a milk collection and semen distribution centre. To become a paravet involves months of rigourous training, and for women like this one would mean juggling work and training needs with home and family duties. Whatever the hurdles she had to overcome, this paravet woman is today all business, appearing fully in command and running her centre like a ‘boss’.

Dairy producers and processors in Bhadrack, Odisha State, India

A woman paravet runs a milk collection and semen distribution centre on the outskirts of Bhadrak, Odisha (ILRI/Susan MacMillan).

Dairy producers and processors in Bhadrack, Odisha State, India

The Bhadrak businesswoman who trained to become a paravet (ILRI/Susan MacMillan).

Equally impressive was a woman running an integrated family farm just a block away from the milk collection centre. This matriarch businesswoman raises cattle and sells dairy products she makes every morning in her own house. She raises chickens and other poultry in her front yard. And she grows fish in a series of aquaculture ponds in her backyard.

Dairy producers and processors in Bhadrack, Odisha State, India

A woman who runs her family’s highly integrated crop-and-animal farm and associated successful small businesses on the outskirts of Bhadrak feeds her chickens (ILRI/Susan MacMillan).

We were invited into her home to watch her cheesemaking process, assisted by her sons. In a country where men typically take over such successful home businesses, it was impressive to see this older woman demonstrably still at the helm of her growing business, exercising agency on many levels, and disregarding conventional constraints imposed by her gender and age. As we left her home, we told her how impressive we found her finely integrated farm. Her response was along the lines of: ‘Yes, it is successful. But I don’t sleep much keeping it all going.’

Dairy producers and processors in Bhadrack, Odisha State, India

The Bhadrak businesswoman with her grandson before one of her several fish ponds (ILRI/Susan MacMillan).

The late journalist and cultural critic Christopher Hitchens once said:

The cure for poverty has a name, in fact.
It is called empowerment of women.

In India, this cure appears to be readily at hand—one that, with modest encouragement, is ready to spread widely, for the benefit of all.

Read previous parts in this blog series
‘Curds and goats, lives and livelihoods—A dozen stories from northern and eastern India’
Part 1: Colourful convocation: Jimmy Smith addresses graduates of India’s prestigious National Dairy Research Institute, 30 Mar 2016.
Part 2: Elite buffaloes and other exemplars of advanced Indian dairy science at the National Dairy Research Institute, 31 Mar 2016.
Part 3: Culture of the cow: Curds in the city—Better living through smallholder dairying in northern India, 5 Apr 2016.
Part 4: Building better brands and lives through peri-urban dairying and smart crop-dairy farming, 6 Apr 2016
Part 5: Wonder women of Bhubaneswar, 12 Apr 2016.
Part 6: Odisha Odyssey: The Arcadian landscapes and tribal goat keepers of Mayurbhanj, 9 May 2016.
Part 7: Odisha Odyssey: A look at the emerging commercial dairy value chains in eastern India, 12 May 2016
Part 8: Getting the (science) word out: ILRI and ICAR share livestock communications and knowledge management practices, 25 May 2016
Part 9: Reaching stakeholders, influencing policies: ICAR–ILRI communications workshop, 11 Jul 2016.
Part 10: Leveling livestock information: Knowledge management at an ICAR–ILRI communications workshop, 12 Jul 2016.
Part 11: India’s addiction to milk as a diabetes pandemic moves to the villages, 29 Jul 2016.

Read an ILRI opinion piece by Susan MacMillan on evidence-based advocacy communications.

Visit ILRI News for a series of articles on ‘Curds and goats, lives and livelihoods—
A dozen stories from northern and eastern India’.

View all photographs of the workshop in this ILRI Flickr photo album.


Gastrointestinal nematode infection in small ruminants in Ethiopia: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Animal science for sustainable productivity program:Outputs -

Gastrointestinal nematode infection in small ruminants in Ethiopia: A systematic review and meta-analysis Asmare, K.; Sheferaw, D.; Aragaw, K.; Abera, M.; Sibhat, B.; Haile, A.; Kiara, H.; Szonyi, B.; Skjerve, E.; Wieland, B. Gastrointestinal (GI) nematode infections are a major health challenge affecting productive and reproductive performance of sheep and goats in Ethiopia. However, there is no comprehensive summary on the occurrence and distribution of the infection at national level. This systematic review provides pooled prevalence estimates and assesses potential predictors of the nematode infections in small ruminants, i.e. helpful in planning interventions or control strategies. The review used 50 animal level datasets retrieved from 24 manuscripts. The studies used data collected from 9407 sheep and 3478 goats. A meta-analytical approach was employed to analyze Effect size (ES). The reported GI nematodes represented eleven genera affecting sheep and goats including:Haemonchus, Trichostrongylus, Teladorsagia/Ostertagia, Strongyloides, Bunostomum,Nematodirus, Chabertia, Trichuris, Cooperia, Skrjabinema and Oesophagostomum. The GI nematodes pooled prevalence estimate in the random effect model was 75.8% (95% CI: 69.6, 80.8). The subgroup analysis revealed significant (p < 0.05) differences in the prevalence between different regions and type of diagnostic methods used. ‘Postmortem technique’ and ‘eastern part of the country’ were associated with higher GI nematode prevalence and accounted for 68.1% of the between studies heterogeneity. In light of the high parasitic prevalence in all agro-ecologies, the need for strategic intervention is recommended. Meanwhile, data need to be generated for some of the regions where dependable survey reports are lacking.

From gender analysis to transforming gender norms: Using empowerment pathways to enhance gender equity and food security in Tanzania

Livelihoods, gender, impact and innovation:Outputs -

From gender analysis to transforming gender norms: Using empowerment pathways to enhance gender equity and food security in Tanzania Galiè, A.; Kantor, P. Drawing on studies from Africa, Asia and South America, this book provides empirical evidence and conceptual explorations of the gendered dimensions of food security. It investigates how food security and gender inequity are conceptualized within interventions, assesses the impacts and outcomes of gender-responsive programs on food security and gender equity and addresses diverse approaches to gender research and practice that range from descriptive and analytical to strategic and transformative. The chapters draw on diverse theoretical perspectives, including transformative learning, feminist theory, deliberative democracy and technology adoption. As a result, they add important conceptual and empirical material to a growing literature on the challenges of gender equity in agricultural production.

Gastrointestinal nematode infection in small ruminants in Ethiopia: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Our latest outputs -

Gastrointestinal nematode infection in small ruminants in Ethiopia: A systematic review and meta-analysis Asmare, K.; Sheferaw, D.; Aragaw, K.; Abera, M.; Sibhat, B.; Haile, A; Kiara, H.; Szonyi, B.; Skjerve, E.; Wieland, B. Gastrointestinal (GI) nematode infections are a major health challenge affecting productive and reproductive performance of sheep and goats in Ethiopia. However, there is no comprehensive summary on the occurrence and distribution of the infection at national level. This systematic review provides pooled prevalence estimates and assesses potential predictors of the nematode infections in small ruminants, i.e. helpful in planning interventions or control strategies. The review used 50 animal level datasets retrieved from 24 manuscripts. The studies used data collected from 9407 sheep and 3478 goats. A meta-analytical approach was employed to analyze Effect size (ES). The reported GI nematodes represented eleven genera affecting sheep and goats including:Haemonchus, Trichostrongylus, Teladorsagia/Ostertagia, Strongyloides, Bunostomum,Nematodirus, Chabertia, Trichuris, Cooperia, Skrjabinema and Oesophagostomum. The GI nematodes pooled prevalence estimate in the random effect model was 75.8% (95% CI: 69.6, 80.8). The subgroup analysis revealed significant (p < 0.05) differences in the prevalence between different regions and type of diagnostic methods used. ‘Postmortem technique’ and ‘eastern part of the country’ were associated with higher GI nematode prevalence and accounted for 68.1% of the between studies heterogeneity. In light of the high parasitic prevalence in all agro-ecologies, the need for strategic intervention is recommended. Meanwhile, data need to be generated for some of the regions where dependable survey reports are lacking.

Migration and self-protection against climate change: A case study of samburu county, Kenya

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Migration and self-protection against climate change: A case study of samburu county, Kenya Ng’ang’a, S.K.; Bulte, E.H.; Giller, K.E.; McIntire, J.M.; Rufino, M.C. Climate change will affect the livelihoods of pastoralists in arid and semi-arid lands. Using data on agro-pastoral households from northern Kenya, we explore whether migration of household members enhances adoption of agricultural innovations that aim to provide protection against weather shocks. Specifically, we seek to test whether migration and adaptation are complementary mechanisms to protect the household against adverse shocks, or whether they are substitutes. Do remittances relax capital constraints and facilitate the uptake of adaptive measures, or do they render adaptation superfluous? Our data provide suggestive evidence that remittances from migrant household members may relax capital constraints, and that remittances are an important mechanism linking migration to adoption, enabling the uptake of new technologies that involve change in activities or high costs. Specifically, migrant households adopt more adaptive measures (promoting self-protection), and we document some support for the hypothesis that this is especially the case for high-cost adaptations such as the purchasing of drought tolerant livestock. These findings suggest that migration and local innovation are complementary rather than substitutive mechanisms of self-protection for pastoral households in the semi-arid lands of northern Kenya. Households who have at least one member who has migrated are able to overcome barriers to employ high-cost agricultural innovations–through using remittances received—thus enhancing their self-protection against climate change related shocks.

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