Knowledge for Development

Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis of the CTA ST&I Strategies Programme

Date: 17/12/2013


In November 2013, CTA undertook a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis of the CTA ST&I Strategies Programme. The analysis used the results of a two-week online questionnaire targeting 250 partners and beneficiaries and of an environmental scan of the ACP/EU and international S&T landscape.  

The preliminary results of both the survey and the environmental scan were shared and further interrogated during an ACP/EU expert workshop held 13–15 November 2013 in the Netherlands.

Presentations: CTA Science & Technology SWOT Analysis Nov 2013 


 The recommendations of the expert workshop were used to finalise the SWOT report and identify future priorities and intervention areas.The responses to the survey and the discussions of the working group indicate remarkable satisfaction with the achievements of the ST&I Strategies Programme and strong support for its continuation. The programme still acts as a critical element of CTA’s overall commitment to (i) Building and documenting the evidence base for agricultural policies; (ii) Strengthening the capacity of stakeholders; and to (iii) disseminate knowledge for better policy making and implementation. 

The SWOT respondents indicated that maintaining CTA’s competence and neutrality is essential to the continuing success of the ST&I Strategies Programme. It should protect these strengths and furthermore consolidate its ability to build strong and effective relationships with ACP stakeholders through networking, hosted events, publications and the Centre’s website. Among the identified weaknesses is CTA’s inability to date to fully demonstrate and get the credit it deserves for its achievements. Clear articulation of the outcomes CTA is aiming for would help the development of impact assessment techniques.

To prioritise interventions, The ST&I Strategies Programme must be able to tease out from the myriad of emerging issues and opportunities those in which it has most comparative advantage for making the greatest contributions. As in the past, CTA’s comparative advantage lies in detecting these emerging issues and in its ability to generate knowledge and raise awareness.

This is what the respondents recognised as having been the prime source of the ST&I Strategies Programme’s achievements as exemplified by past activities related to national innovation systems, foresight, etc.In summary this SWOT analysis confirms that CTA and its ST&I Strategies Programme have done very well with the resources available. There is continuing demand for it and the challenges should be tackled head-on.