Looking Forward: Policies, Institutional and Organizational Arrangements for AKST Development and Application | 107

Consumers would have to rely on limited information and because of the limited role civil society would have, consumer activism would not take root. The human resource quality would remain at low ebb and agriculture would continue to be complacent with unskilled or low-skilled labor, with scarce capacity to transform agriculture and thus increase its productivity. Over-controlled governance would prevent agriculture and its relevant institutional arrangements from responding to the change out of and across borders.

As governments embark on more people-caring and outward-looking policies, they become more proactive to provide equitable access to education, health and information. Thus AKST development will be enhanced, focusing mainly on processing, storage and marketing rather than agricultural production.

Local organizations will receive more support from local and national governments. Governments will become more proactive to provide equitable access to education, health and information. The aim will be to improve knowledge about the environment and to ensure an optimal national natural resource management (NRM) system. In addition, new actors will engage in agricultural production. The goal
of achieving a better quality of life as opposed to generating income will get prominence. Higher awareness and responsibility levels will help fight problems like environmental pollution and public health hazards on national and regional levels, and thus achieve sustainability goals.

Affected by WTO negotiations, environmental problems will be solved through technology and market-oriented institutional reform. People will pay for the pollution they create. Under these policies with expanded property rights, people providing ecosystem services will be paid. Ecotechnologies for managing ecosystem services will be demanded as interest in increasing economic values of property rights grows and benefits of ecosystem services increase.

In addition, countries will be encouraged to produce and sell products tailored to diversified market niches. This is applicable to both regional and global markets. Problems of agriculture in CWANA will be addressed holistically and efforts made to align agriculture with WTO negotiations aimed at global reduction of subsidies and removal of barriers to agricultural trade. Markets for ecosystems services and relevant technologies will be created and developed as a result of agricultural multifunctionality and diversification. New companies and cooperative institutions will evolve to provide these services. These companies, however, requiring large amounts of capital and knowledge, will develop in rich countries and operate as multinationals in poor countries, imposing their own fees and operating under less control from local governments or institutions. Poor countries will be at a disadvantage and may not approve of such institutions.

4.2.2 Capacity building for innovation

Public research organizations. CWANA countries do not possess the institutional, managerial or financial capacity to absorb current levels of project aid or to sustain project activities after foreign aid is phased out. The challenge for donors is to continue moving beyond the resource-transfer model of financing the construction of buildings and purchase of equipment and vehicles for NARS and pursue a


model based on human capability and institutional building that is geared to the specific needs of CWANA countries at this stage of their development. The following constraints face most NARS of developing countries in their institutional development: weak research management, institutional instability (donor driven), human resource instability, funding instability, research program instability, limited relevance of research and deficiency in priority setting, defective linkage with the world knowledge system; insufficient links within the NARS themselves with universities, the private sector and NGOs, and with outside partners such as international agricultural research centers, regional institutions and advanced research institutions in industrial countries; and weak monitoring and evaluation of research. Generally speaking, the role of foreign assistance has been prominent in developing NARS in the region. Building agricultural research capacity means developing the capacity to design organizational rules that will help people organize, support, conduct and monitor agricultural research. Research management capacity development measures may involve

  • Setting medium- and long-term research plans and strategies to serve as a frame for priority research programs and projects, in light of integrated sustainable development priorities and policies
  • Identifying appropriate research instruments for achieving research objectives
  • Transforming human, physical and financial resources of research institutions into research outputs and practical technologies
  • Upgrading and executing a research agenda consistent with minimum environmental degradation
  • Monitoring, evaluating and revising the agricultural research system

The agricultural research agenda must respond to the challenges of the world food supply. It will be influenced by the choices of research investments and strategies made by governments and institutions in both industrial and developing countries.

It is now recognized that a rigid borderline between public and private sector roles cannot be established, and there are many gray areas where public–private partnerships are needed, often in conjunction with civil society and producer and community organizations. In some least-developed countries, the withdrawal of the public sector from markets has left a vacuum that the private sector has not adequately filled, because of high transactions costs and risks. This means that the public sector needs to take a more active role in coordinating activities, jointly financing and building the capacity that the private sector needs to fill its role. In addition it must finance core public goods, especially infrastructure. Many responsibilities are also being devolved to local or state governments for decentralized program implementation, providing additional challenges and opportunities. Strategies such as contracting out to the private sector, providing targeted matching grants to support activities within the public interest, expanding collaborative action in the context of development of market supply chains and trade associations, various types of consultations and coordination forums with the private sector are all important. CWANA countries, while signing free trade agreements and