The ATA’s mandate requires it to work on two levels:
- At the national level – ATA is expected to work with all stakeholders to identify solutions to address systemic bottlenecks that can have a catalytic effect to transform the lives of smallholder farmers across the country; and
- At the geographic level – ATA is expected to work with implementation partners to ensure that a focused set of catalytic interventions are integrated around a prioritized set of commodities around the country.
I. Support to Address Systemic Bottlenecks for National Impact
Over the past decade, the Ethiopian agriculture sector has primarily focused on ensuring food security and identifying new technologies that will increase farmers’ production and productivity. While this approach has brought about major growth of the sector, it will be necessary to do more in order to create the structural transformation of the agricultural sector necessary to support Ethiopia’s industrial and overall economic growth ambitions. As such, the ATA has been asked to focus on the systemic bottlenecks that constrain Ethiopia’s smallholder farmers from moving from subsistence toward commercial agriculture.
Identifying and Resolving Systemic Bottlenecks
By consulting international case studies, and leveraging best practices from other problem solving organizations, the ATA has developed an Ethiopia-specific approach to identify and resolve systemic bottlenecks. This includes:
Senior policy makers prioritize a narrow set of specific issues that require immediate attention into the Agricultural Transformation Agenda;
Identify solutions for prioritized bottlenecks through deep engagement with technical experts in Ethiopia and across the world;
Support local organizations that are implementing solutions to ensure that analyses and strategies lead to results on the ground; and
Robust monitoring and performance management to ensure that interventions are actually executed on schedule and within budget.
II. Coordinate Implementation of an Integrated Set of Solutions around Prioritized Commodities and Geographies
Ethiopia is an extremely diverse country with over 30 different agro-ecologies, as well as a variety of cropping and livestock systems. All systemic solutions prioritized in the Transformation Agenda will have national application.
However, the greatest impact on the ground will only come when these systemic solutions are integrated into a coordinated set of interventions applied to specific commodities and geographies. As such, a second aspect of ATA’s mandate is to work with stakeholders at the Regional level to identify and support the implementation of a narrow set of systemic interventions in an integrated fashion. This requires ATA to work closely with Regional governments and implementation partners both from the public, private and civil society sectors. It also requires ATA to be deeply involved in Regional planning and resource allocation processes.
Geographic integration has been done on a limited basis during the initial stage of ATA’s efforts. However, rapid expansion of ATA’s work in this area is expected in the coming months due to the development of the Agricultural Commercialization Initiative (provide link to that highlighted deliverable) and the focus of GTP2 on increased smallholder farmer commercialization and the market orientation of key commodity value chains.