Ohio State Leads Conference to Build Capacity Among Agricultural Higher Education Institutions in Africa

Sep. 22, 2017

The Ohio State University-led Innovative Agricultural Research Initiative (iAGRI) in Tanzania recently completed a three-day workshop entitled “Capacity Building for Scientific Relevance in African Agricultural Universities” for 45 deans and faculty from 19 different agricultural universities in 11 different African countries.

African Deans and Faculty Participants in the Conference

Since food and agricultural systems in Africa are in transition, African agricultural universities need to transform their teaching, research, and outreach programs in order to better contribute to food security and national development. To improve the capacity of African universities to make these changes, the iAGRI project – administered through the Office of International Programs in Agriculture in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences - designed and led a workshop from September 14-16, 2017 at Sokoine University of Agriculture (SUA) in Morogoro, Tanzania.  

conference participants in discussion

Leading the program for Ohio State were Mark Erbaugh, Director of International Programs in Agriculture and iAGRI Administrative Director, and David Kraybill, Professor in the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE) and Director of iAGRI. 

The workshop was supported by the Norman Borlaug Leadership Enhancement in Agriculture Program at the University of California – Davis, with collaborative inputs from the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM). SUA’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Raphael Chibunda, opened the workshop before participants proceeded to engage in discussions on human and institutional capacity development, leading organizational change, strategies for universities to better engage with local and national communities, and strategic planning - all with a focus on enhancing the relevancy of agricultural universities to national development.