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Linking East and West African farming systems experience into a BELT of sustainable intensification

Project description

Sustainable farming in East and West Africa

Marginal land is land that is of little agricultural value because crops produced there would be worth less than any rent paid for access to the area. Helping to develop such zones in Africa is a key goal for the EU-funded EWA-BELT project. The aim is to promote the sustainable intensification of agricultural production in organic, agroforestry and mixed crop and livestock farming systems in 38 study areas of six countries belonging to East and West Africa. The project will enhance current scientific knowledge on the adaptation of new and improved traditional crops in different agroecosystems and the impacts of traditional agricultural practices on soil health.

Objective

The EWA-BELT project aims at developing SI of agriculture productions in organic, agroforestry and mixed crop and livestock farming systems in 38 study areas of 6 countries belonging to East (Ethiopia, Kenya and Tanzania) and West (Burkina Faso, Ghana, Sierra Leone) Africa. The research activities, carried out in Farmer Field Research Units (FFRU), will address areas including marginalized and/or abandoned lands and existing agricultural lands to increase their yield potential. Through integrated participative researches, innovative tools (FFRU, ICT, Integrated Pest Disease Management - IPDM) and identification and dissemination of best practices, all countries will be linked into an interregional East-West African BELT able to reinforce SI in agriculture.
The project will enhance the current scientific knowledge on the adaptation of new and improved traditional crops in different agroecosystems and the impacts of traditional agricultural practices on soil health in terms of nutrients, water retention and organic matter content. EWA-BELT will also investigate the introduction of innovative and appropriate plant protection technologies in the IPDM for key crops and the identification of a set of indicators to be used in the assessment of the SI approach impacts taking into account environmental health and, synergically, economic and social aspects.
The project will introduce highly innovative cost-affordable technologies, to be easily used in the field by unskilled personnel. Technical benefits provided by all implemented techniques will be then evaluated for their economic effect on farmers and along the value chain.
EWA-BELT will address gender issues and empowering women at every stage of the process. Finally, to maximize the impact, project results (in progress and final achievements) will be yearly disseminated during the “Infopoverty U.N. Conference”, one of the U.N. highest-level initiatives to elaborate strategies and design solutions towards SI.

Call for proposal

H2020-SFS-2018-2020

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Sub call

H2020-SFS-2019-2

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Coordinator

UNIVERSITA DEGLI STUDI DI SASSARI
Net EU contribution
€ 1 507 625,00
Address
Piazza universita 21
07100 Sassari
Italy

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Region
Isole Sardegna Sassari
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Links
Other funding
€ 62,50

Participants (19)