In this issue, we feature three new lead articles; (i) Utilizing indigenous breeds: Improving the reproductive potential of smallholder dairy herds by Alastair Paterson, (ii) Improving livestock water productivity: Lessons from the Nile River Basin by Don Peden, and (iii) Using Less Water in Crop Production Systems by Bruce Lankford. Newly published reports including the proceedings of the International Conference on Innovations in Extension and Advisory Services and links to other key documentary resources are also shared.
The lead articles, published reports and links confirm the enormity and complexity of the agricultural challenges and the need for interlinked thinking, convergence of different sciences and engineering, multi-disciplinary team and multi-stakeholder approaches in the quest to identify and implement solutions. We need to build on existing knowledge including local knowledge, create new knowledge and innovate within any given context. Yet, these are not new ideas. How will we measure success? Agricultural transformation cannot occur, if the majority of smallholder farmers are using the same primitive tools as were used centuries ago. They will also not change and adopt new practices, if the enabling conditions including the policies are not conducive. There also needs to be trust.
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