Globalization, climate change, environmental degradation, migrations, the spread of communicable diseases and conflict are just some examples of evolving challenges and opportunities confronting rural poor women and men. Development practitioners constantly face new challenges and many good practices may quickly become obsolete. Making a positive and lasting impact on rural poverty requires the capacity both to implement tried and tested practices and to respond to new challenges and opportunities as they emerge. In other words, it requires the ability to innovate.
The complexity and diversity of rural poverty call for new, better solutions. Despite global progress towards the SDGs, many countries and regions are lagging behind, and social and economic inequalities are growing almost everywhere. This situation calls for new approaches to eradicating rural poverty and a better understanding of its challenges as seen by the rural poor.
Achieving one’s goals better
IFAD defines innovation as a process that adds value or solves a problem in new ways. If possible, the product, idea or approach should also be new to its context, useful and cost-effective in relation to a goal, and able to “stick” after pilot testing.
Innovation can take many forms and be used in many ways across IFAD and its projects. Innovative solutions can provide both small-scale incremental improvements and large-scale transformations. Innovation is not necessarily related to technology, nor does it have to be something entirely new or developed by IFAD alone.
For IFAD, the most important innovations are those that impact rural poor people directly: changes to the way smallholders and other rural poor people invest, produce and market their products; manage their assets; get organized, communicate and interact with their partners; and influence policies and institutions.
Tunisia: Detecting change with remote sensing
IFAD Innovation Network
Webinar: Agricultural Investment Data Analyzer (AIDA) – Guiding agricultural investments for higher impact
El FIDA lanza la Segunda Edición del Premio a la Innovación Juvenil Rural en América Latina y el Caribe
IFAD and GCF scale-up action to improve life for millions of people and restore ecosystems in Africa’s Great Green Wall
National Calls for Proposals (The Gambia, Ghana, Senegal): Supporting remittances in times of crisis in Africa
The Financing Facility for Remittances (FFR) of IFAD is pleased to announce the 2020 National Calls for Proposals: Supporting Remittances in Times of Crisis in Africa.
Three ways we’re using digital technologies to fight rural poverty in the NEN region
Rural youth, innovation and tradition: the challenge of a new order
Resilience in rural Syria: An entrepreneurial spirit conquers hardships
Tracking investments in Tunisia with remote sensing
Digital agriculture: key to helping small-scale producers overcome COVID-19 challenges
Greening the Sahara: the Great Green Wall Initiative
In 2009, I travelled by road to Timbuktu, Mali on a short field trip. As we made our way down the dusty roads, I remember wondering what could possibly pull this arid, sparsely populated land into relative prosperity.