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brief

Local sources of resilience: Working with social capital

People have always faced shocks and have devised a variety of institutional responses to cope with, recover from, and prevent future impacts. Central to these shocks and this coping capacity, but often underexplored, is the role of social capital.…

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Building resilience to conflict through food security policies and programs: An overview

One and a half billion people still live in fragile, conflict affected areas. People in these countries are about twice as likely to be malnourished and to die during infancy as people in other developing countries. This outcome is often a direct…

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Advocacy to reduce malnutrition in Uganda

Drawing from the case of Uganda, this brief develops a model showing how advocates for improved nutrition in the countries of Sub-Saharan Africa might engage with governments and communities and move from knowledge to commitment to action in order to…

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The role of agriculture growth in reducing poverty and hunger

Although Sub-Saharan Africa experienced unprecedented economic growth in recent decades, this did not always translate into less poverty or improved nutrition. The Tanzanian economy is one example of a country that failed to reap the benefits of…

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Innovations in rural and agricultural finance: M-PESA

Over the past three years, payment strategies for emerging markets have been revolutionized by the advent of a simple cell-phone-based payment service in Kenya called M-PESA (“M” for “mobile” and “pesa” for “money”). From a small-scale pilot program…

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Smallholder dairy in Kenya

The author describes a successful case study as follows: "Dairy production in Kenya has grown at 2.8 percent per year over the past two decades, resulting in per capita production levels double those found anywhere else on the continent. Kenya's…

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Maize breeding in East and Southern Africa, 1900-2000

During the first half of the 20th century, African farmers transformed maize from a minor imported foodcrop into the continent's principal staple food. In the second half of the century, newly independent governments launched support programs that…

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