It is time to fundamentally rethink the role of agricultural knowledge, science and technology in achieving equitable development and sustainability…The focus must turn to the needs of small farms in diverse ecosystems and to areas with the greatest needs. This means improving rural livelihoods,… sustaining natural resources, enhancing multiple benefits provided by ecosystems,…providing fair market access to farm markets
(International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development, 2008)
Time To Change!
Population growth, advancing degradation of natural resources, increasing prices for agricultural inputs: the search for options to use locally available natural resources more efficiently is becoming throughout the world ever more important. This is even more the case for rural communities in developing countries, which often strongly rely on local resources for their livelihoods.
Over the past decades initiatives to support small farmers' productivity have often concentrated their activities around the promotion of expensive “high quality agricultural inputs” while neglecting efforts to strengthen the careful and efficient use of local resources. The approach has failed in countless cases to produce lasting positive results.
Mayor re-orientations are required to improve the relevance and impact of future interventions. Rather than continuing to treat mainly symptoms- more emphasis needs to paid on tackling the underlying root causes of advancing natural resource degradation and decreasing agricultural productivity.
Even land commonly refered to as “marginal” often still contains substantial production potential. In order to support rural communities in restoring productive, sustainable land management systems, enhancing the careful and efficient use of locally remaining resources is essential.
The identification and active cooperation with open minded, innovative local farmers plays a very important role for the development and promotion of appropriate natural resource management patterns.
It’s time to act!
Down to Earth Consult
has been created to support actions directed to substantially raise the quality, impact and efficiency of rural development and disaster prevention interventions.