Since the beginning of the 1990s, the total number of agricultural researchers in Burkina Faso has doubled.
Agricultural R&D expenditure, however, has been erratic, with increases in spending coinciding largely with the implementation of two consecutive World Bank projects (PRA-I and NASDP-II), on which the country’s agricultural research sector has relied heavily since 1989. These projects have contributed greatly to the recruitment of national researchers, the upgrading of the buildings and laboratory equipment
belonging to many CNRST agencies, and the improvement of research management and coordination. In addition, numerous researchers have profited from extensive training as part of these projects. Consequently, Burkina Faso’s agricultural researchers are among the most highly qualified in Africa. Nevertheless, future funding remains uncertain. The national government is currently attempting to secure funding from the World Bank for a third phase of the agricultural research project. Until final approval is granted, agricultural research in Burkina Faso will remain highly dependent on government and donor funding.
When compared with that of its neighbors, Burkina Faso’s performance in many key agricultural science and technology indicator areas is average. However, the country’s research intensity ratio and its average expenditure per researcher in 2001 compared well with those of many other countries in the region.