FAO Quotables

"But being right, even morally right, isn't everything. It is also important to be competent, to be consistent, and to be knowledgeable. It's important for your soldiers and diplomats to speak the language of the people you want to influence. It's important to understand the ethnic and tribal divisions of the place you hope to assist."
-Anne Applebaum

Thursday, May 3, 2012

The New Harvest by Calestous Juma

The New Harvest by Calestous Juma is a worthy read.  Unlike many academics, Juma can write.  As a grad school student I appreciate this--I wonder just who these peers are that review the myriad articles before they are published in peer-reviewed journals.  They definitely value content and regression graphs (ugh) more than clear and concise writing.

I am only about 1/3 of the way through so I will remain guarded in my recommendation until the final 2/3.  An excerpt is below:

"But Africa faces three major opportunities that can help transform its agriculture to be a force for economic growth. First, advances in science, technology, and engineering worldwide offer Africa new tools needed to promote sustainable agriculture. Second, efforts to create regional markets will provide new incentives for agricultural production and trade. Third, a new generation of African leaders
is helping the continent to focus on long-term economic transformation. This book provides policy- relevant information on how to align science, technology, and engineering missions
with regional agricultural development goals.

This book argues that sustaining African economic prosperity will require significant efforts to modernize the continent’s economy through the application of science and technology in agriculture. In other words, agriculture needs to be viewed as a knowledge-based entrepreneurial activity.   The
argument is based on the premise that smart investments in agriculture will have multiplier effects in many sectors of the economy and help spread prosperity. More specifically, the book focuses on the importance of boosting support for agricultural research as part of a larger agenda to promote innovation, invest in enabling infrastructure, build human capacity, stimulate entrepreneurship and improve the governance of innovation."


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