CIAT Annual Report 2018

Decision and Policy Analysis

DAPA hit the ground running in 2018. The provision of climate information to actors in the food system has long been at the core of our strategy on climate action, and in 2018 we had major achievements operationalizing climate services in Latin America and East Africa, and we started a large project in Southeast Asia. The climate team concluded a high-level report with the World Bank on the priorities for investment in climate smart agriculture, which synthesized findings from over 30 climate-smart country profiles in which over 1,800 experts were consulted.

We finalized our Sustainable Food Systems strategy, and made great progress in further understanding urban and peri-urban food systems using a range of innovative approaches. Using value chain approaches, our team made significant advances on work related to food systems resilience. We also advanced understanding of the climate risks in coffee and cacao in collaboration with the private sector in coffee and cocoa.

Digital Agriculture was elevated to a high-level theme in DAPA, and in 2018 the team won the Syngenta crop challenge  by showing the power of machine learning for generating agronomic insights. The team’s success demonstrates CIAT’s world-class capacity for applying analytics to real world challenges in agriculture.

We continued to innovate in the use of remotely sensed information to understand food systems and environmental dynamics, with further deployment of the Terra-i deforestation monitoring system in Honduras, and adaptation of the approach to also monitor agricultural cropland performance.

Wild plants require better conservation
Biodiversity loss is often thought of in terms of threatened animal species – but plants are often threatened as well. The wild relatives of many food crops, along with numerous other useful plants, are poorly conserved, according to a new indicator.  These plants are essential to their ecosystems and valuable for food security but without stronger global efforts to protect plants both in their natural habitats and in gene banks or botanical gardens, global targets for conservation are at risk of not being met.

Open data and publications

DAPA produced over 50 ISI indexed journal articles, exceeded targets on open data publishing, and reported over 15 distinct outcomes to CGIAR Research programs.

Andy Jarvis
Director, Decision and Policy Analysis Research Area

CIAT is a CGIAR Research Center

Was edited and compiled by CIAT Partnerships and Communications

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