IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/jfpoli/v37y2012i2p179-190.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

People, institutions, and technology: A personal view of the role of foundations in international agricultural research and development 1960–2010

Author

Listed:
  • Herdt, Robert W.

Abstract

In the 1940 and 1950s, the Rockefeller and Ford Foundations initiated overseas rural and agricultural development activities in a number of countries in Asia and Latin America. They began with country programs. These programs often involved creating new institutions in the recipient countries, and while the perspective was long term – as long as it took to achieve program goals – the foundations also explicitly sought to work themselves out of a job and turn over responsibility to nationals. By 1960 the two foundations had moved beyond national assistance programs to invent a new model, the international agricultural research center, designed to improve the lives of poor rural people by increasing the productivity of developing world agriculture. Some of the national programs were morphed into international centers. The international agricultural research centers proved attractive to other donors and by the 1970s international agricultural research had become institutionalized in the form of the CGIAR and its associate centers. The 1960s India agricultural program of the Rockefeller Foundation comprised a team of about a dozen American scientists working in India assisting Indian scientists to invent new approaches to agricultural technology development. At the same time and also in India, the Ford Foundation pioneered the integrated rural development model. By the mid-1970s integrated rural development projects were the approach of choice for many donors. In the 1980s the Ford Foundation moved away from agriculture concentrating on broader social issues; the Government of India and Rockefeller Foundation decided Foundation scientists had, indeed, worked themselves out of their jobs and Rockefeller’s India program was effectively closed down, although by then the international agricultural research centers, including ICRISAT in India, had attained a degree of maturity and stability. The Rockefeller Foundation invented another new model for agricultural research in the 1990s – the international rice biotechnology network, in which leading scientists from Asian countries, Western countries and the international centers worked together within a framework managed by Rockefeller scientists. In 2006, the Bill Melinda Gates Foundation entered the global agricultural scene in partnership with the Rockefeller Foundation to establish AGRA, yet another new model. By 2010 the Gates Foundation was annually spending about 10times

Suggested Citation

  • Herdt, Robert W., 2012. "People, institutions, and technology: A personal view of the role of foundations in international agricultural research and development 1960–2010," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 179-190.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:37:y:2012:i:2:p:179-190
    DOI: 10.1016/j.foodpol.2012.01.003
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0306919212000048
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Lele, Uma & Goldsmith, Arthur A, 1989. "The Development of National Agricultural Research Capacity: India's Experience with the Rockefeller Foundation and Its Significance for Africa," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 37(2), pages 305-343, January.
    2. Fan, S., 2008. "Investing in african agriculture to halve poverty by 2015," IWMI Working Papers H041613, International Water Management Institute.
    3. Islam, Nurul, 2011. "Foreign aid to agriculture: Review of facts and analysis," IFPRI discussion papers 01053, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:ecolec:v:141:y:2017:i:c:p:190-201 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Poole, Nigel D. & Chitundu, Maureen & Msoni, Ronald, 2013. "Commercialisation: A meta-approach for agricultural development among smallholder farmers in Africa?," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 155-165.
    3. Wright, Brian D., 2012. "Grand missions of agricultural innovation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(10), pages 1716-1728.

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:37:y:2012:i:2:p:179-190. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/foodpol .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.