To improve agricultural productivity and reduce rural poverty, hunger, and malnutrition, solid institutions are needed. Institutions—the systems of rules in which policies are made and innovation occurs—must allow for effective management of common resources and environmental services, the implementation of inclusive and strategic agricultural policies, and effective service delivery.
To that end, IFPRI undertakes research on how best to create and reform institutions to generate incentives for individuals, civil society, the private sector, and governments in order to actively pursue pro-poor policies. For example, our research identifies social, economic, and institutional factors that facilitate or impede women's access and control over assets including human, social, and political capital. To ensure the delivery of high quality public services and strategic agricultural priority setting, we examine the effectiveness of different public administration options, including decentralization. Additional institution-based research explores how to bring about inclusive collective action for sustainable natural resource management, improved smallholder market access, better risk management, and greater accountability between governments and rural citizens.