Shining a Brighter Light: Comprehensive Evidence on Adoption and Diffusion of CGIAR-Related Innovations in Ethiopia

Webinar and panel discussion, Weds 25th November 2020, 2.15 - 3.15pm (CET)

SPIA Chair Karen Macours will present the recent report followed by a discussion with a panel comprising Alan Tollervey (FCDO), Kundhavi Kadiresan (CGIAR), Doug Gollin (University of Oxford) and Mandefro Nigussie (Former Director-General of EIAR, now State Minister in the Ethiopian Ministry of Agriculture).

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The agricultural sector in Ethiopia has seen sustained growth in recent decades, hand-in-hand with economic growth and poverty reduction. Ethiopia is a hotspot of international agricultural research collaboration, with almost all of the centers of CGIAR being represented in Addis Ababa and working in partnership with the Ethiopian Institute for Agricultural Research. We compiled comprehensive information on the past two decades of CGIAR research activities in Ethiopia, and this ‘stocktaking’ exercise was used to identify specific innovations which are potentially disseminated at scale. A sub-set of these innovations were then integrated into the Ethiopian Socioeconomic Survey (ESS), a regionally and nationally representative panel survey of households in 2015/16 and 2018/19, by using novel data collection techniques such as visual aid protocols and DNA fingerprinting of crop varieties. By presenting representative estimates of the reach of a range of agricultural innovations together in a single survey, we show that in aggregate, innovations often do reach the types of household that CGIAR researchers target, with substantial adoption among smallholders, poor households, and young and female farmers. There is substantial heterogeneity across the innovations in the portfolio, with those innovations most widely diffused (soil and water conservation; improved maize varieties; crossbred chickens) being closely linked to supportive government policies.


  • Karen Macours, Chair, CGIAR Standing Panel on Impact Assessment (20 mins)


  • Alan Tollervey - Head of Agricultural Research, FCDO, UK
  • Kundhavi Kadiresan - Managing Director, Global Engagement and Innovation, CGIAR   
  • Douglas Gollin - Professor of Development Economics, University of Oxford 
  • Mandefro Nigussie - State Minister, Ministry of Agriculture, Ethiopia (Formerly Director General of EIAR)