Date: Wednesday June 21 2017
Farm household characterization to inform climate smart agricultural interventions
June 21, 10am EST
Dr. Mark van Wijk, ILRI
Achieving climate smart agriculture depends on understanding the links between farming and livelihood practices, other possible adaptation options, and their effects on farm performance and household welfare. Reliable indicators of farm performance and household welfare are needed in order to quantify these links, and to be able to design interventions which meet the differing needs of specific user groups. However, the lack of standardization of performance indicators has led to a wide array of tools and ad-hoc indicators which limit our ability to compare across studies and to draw general conclusions on relationships and trade-offs whereby performance indicators are shaped by farm management and the wider social environmental context. In this presentation I present work on bringing together existing data sets of farm characterization, focusing on smallholder farming systems, and the integrated use of simple indicators in a new survey tool to quantify food security and its drivers at farm household level. I will give a series of examples how we use this type of ‘big data’ information on smallholder farmers to analyse the benefits of sustainable intensification and climate smart agriculture (‘what works where for whom?), and more specifically how we can use this information to analyse adaption options to climate related risks.
Mark van Wijk is a Senior Scientist at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), based in Quito, Ecuador. His research focuses on analyzing the drivers of food security in smallholder farming systems in developing countries, trying to harvest from the added value of combining modeling, experimental, participatory and statistical approaches. Previously he worked almost 10 years as Assistant Professor at Wageningen University in the Plant Production Systems group.