- Master of Science in Plant Breeding and Seed Systems – hosted by Makerere University in Kampala Uganda
- Master of Science in Agricultural Information and Communication Management – hosted by Egerton University (Kenya), University of Nairobi and Haramaya University (Ethiopia)
- Master of Science in Research Methods – hosted by Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (Kenya)
Master of Science in Plant Breeding and Seed System: African Universities have been challenged to produce the required human resource to lead innovations to address the increasing food insecurity and other livelihood issues facing the continent. In particular, there is urgent need to build capacity to improve crop productivity and enhance sustainability of Africa’s natural resources as a means to overcoming food insecurity and improve household incomes. In these efforts, strengthening plant breeding programmes and seed systems is considered a priority intervention. Given the current limited numbers of Plant Breeders in Sub-Saharan Africa and the urgent need to have functional seed systems, Makerere University in partnership with 11 other universities in east and southern Africa initiated a regional training programme based at Makerere University to produce MSc. graduates as a short to medium term response to the plant breeding gap in the region. Please click here to learn more about this programme.
Master of Science in Agricultural Information and Communication Management (MSc AICM): Research in Africa is generating agricultural technologies that can improve food security but the impact is yet to be felt in many households owing to inefficiency in communicating and sharing agricultural knowledge to increase production and food security. The situation in sub-Saharan Africa is aggravated by the slow adoption of modern information and communication technologies (ICT) and the shortage of Information Communication Management (ICM) professionals. Analyses of agricultural training programmes in Africa universities show that most graduates of these programmes often do not acquire adequate capacity to integrate ICT to communicate agricultural information. On the other hand, ICT Specialists lack technical knowledge to package and communicate new developments in science. Although ICT is evolving fast in Sub-Saharan Africa, its adoption in agricultural research, education and extension still lags behind.
- The changing focus of research for development to generate impact on major problems
- The need for integrating, cross disciplinary work
- The blurring of boundaries between research and extension, with non-governmental organizations and others now playing a role in development
- The emergence of new disciplines such as environmental economics and sustainability science
- The need for multi-scale approaches, that look beyond the plot to farms, landscapes and regions
- Challenging research paradigms such as participation/stakeholder involvement
The research methods needed to work in this environment are also new and changing rapidly. However, the training offered by universities in research methods has kept up. Furthermore, there is very limited capacity to offer research methods support to researchers. In fact, there is limited human resource capacity in terms of numbers and competence throughout sub-Saharan Africa, the limited capacity and inadequate support to be changing priorities of agricultural research has unfortunately weakened the quality of research and progress towards increasing food and nutritional security and alleviating poverty (CTA,1997), thus, it is proposed to facilitate training of a cohort of young and practical Research Methodology Specialists to support the National Agricultural Research and Extension Systems. Please visit the hosting institution by clicking here