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CGIAR Research Partnership Focuses on Dryland Agriculture

CGIAR22 May 2013: A new program from the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) will focus on research to boost agriculture productivity and strengthen food security in dryland areas.

The CGIAR Research Program on Dryland Systems, which will be led by the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA), represents a partnership of more than 60 organizations that has emerged from a yearlong consultative and planning phase. The partnership launch occurred in Amman, Jordan, from 21-23 May 2013.

The program will initially focus on actions in sites in the West African Sahel and Dry Savannas, East and Southern Africa, North Africa and West Asia, Central Asia and the Caucasus, and South Asia. It will also work to understand climate change impacts in dryland regions and ways to reduce vulnerability. The Systems' methodology will seek to integrate lessons from a range of interventions to develop packages of solutions, instead of traditional piecemeal approaches. It will focus on minimizing risk in low production areas, and advancing sustainable intensification in higher-potential areas. Interventions will be explored related to crops, livestock, rangelands, and aquatic and agroforestry activities, including climate smart strategies.

Partners include nine CGIAR Centers: (Bioversity International, the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT); the International Potato Center (CIP); ICARDA, the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF); the International Crops Research Institute in the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT); the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI); the International Water Management Institute (IWMI); and the World Fish Center. [CGIAR Dryland Systems Research Program Press Release] [ICARDA Press Release]