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Course teaches farming system analysis

By Frédéric Baudron /CIMMYT

An international group of Ph.D. students was trained on farming systems and rural livelihoods during a course this month in Ethiopia. CIMMYT, Hawassa University and Wageningen University organized “Farming System and Rural Livelihoods: Adaptation and Vulnerability” from 6-18 October.

Photo: Frédéric Baudron/CIMMYT
Photo: Frédéric Baudron/CIMMYT

Twenty-five Ph.D. students from 17 countries – including Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, the Netherlands, Niger, Nigeria, Portugal, Rwanda, South Africa, Sweden, Uganda, the United States and Zimbabwe – participated. CIMMYT Ph.D. students Yodit Kebede, Tesfaye Shiferaw and Alain Ndoli also attended the course. The course provided participants with the theory behind farming systems analysis; participatory methods to characterize farming systems; practical use of the sustainable rural livelihood framework; methods of farm-scale yield gap analysis; and methods for scenario analysis and optimization. The four study sites were targets of the Sustainable Intensification for Maize-Legume systems in Eastern and Southern Africa (SIMLESA) project in southern Ethiopia. Frédéric Baudron from CIMMYT Ethiopia was one of the course supervisors. He co-organized field activities, assisted students with group assignments and gave a lecture titled “Farming System (Re)Design and Scenario Development.”