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Social network analysis of multi-stakeholder platforms in agricultural research for development: Opportunities and constraints for innovation and scaling

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  • Hermans, Frans
  • Sartas, Murat
  • van Schagen, Boudy
  • van Asten, Piet
  • Schut, Marc

Abstract

Multi-stakeholder platforms (MSPs) are seen as a promising vehicle to achieve agricultural development impacts. By increasing collaboration, exchange of knowledge and influence mediation among farmers, researchers and other stakeholders, MSPs supposedly enhance their ‘capacity to innovate’ and contribute to the ‘scaling of innovations’. The objective of this paper is to explore the capacity to innovate and scaling potential of three MSPs in Burundi, Rwanda and the South Kivu province located in the eastern part of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). In order to do this, we apply Social Network Analysis and Exponential Random Graph Modelling (ERGM) to investigate the structural properties of the collaborative, knowledge exchange and influence networks of these MSPs and compared them against value propositions derived from the innovation network literature. Results demonstrate a number of mismatches between collaboration, knowledge exchange and influence networks for effective innovation and scaling processes in all three countries: NGOs and private sector are respectively over- and under-represented in the MSP networks. Linkages between local and higher levels are weak, and influential organisations (e.g., high-level government actors) are often not part of the MSP or are not actively linked to by other organisations. Organisations with a central position in the knowledge network are more sought out for collaboration. The scaling of innovations is primarily between the same type of organisations across different administrative levels, but not between different types of organisations. The results illustrate the potential of Social Network Analysis and ERGMs to identify the strengths and limitations of MSPs in terms of achieving development impacts.

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  • Hermans, Frans & Sartas, Murat & van Schagen, Boudy & van Asten, Piet & Schut, Marc, 2017. "Social network analysis of multi-stakeholder platforms in agricultural research for development: Opportunities and constraints for innovation and scaling," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 1-21.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:espost:170683
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    7. Westermann, Olaf & Förch, Wiebke & Thornton, Philip & Körner, Jana & Cramer, Laura & Campbell, Bruce, 2018. "Scaling up agricultural interventions: Case studies of climate-smart agriculture," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 165(C), pages 283-293.
    8. Turyahikayo, W. & Matsiko, F.B. & Okiror, J.J. & Obaa, B.B. & Hanf, J.H., 2018. "The Perceived Role Of Innovation Platforms In Addressing The Agricultural Value Chain Collective Problems: An Empirical Application Of Transaction Cost Theory," International Journal of Agricultural Research, Innovation and Technology (IJARIT), IJARIT Research Foundation, vol. 8(2), December.
    9. Reed, James & Ickowitz, Amy & Chervier, Colas & Djoudi, Houria & Moombe, Kaala & Ros-Tonen, Mirjam & Yanou, Malaika & Yuliani, Linda & Sunderland, Terry, 2020. "Integrated landscape approaches in the tropics: A brief stock-take," Land Use Policy, Elsevier, vol. 99(C).
    10. Md Kamruzzaman & Katherine Anne Daniell & Ataharul Chowdhury & Steven Crimp, 2021. "The Role of Extension and Advisory Services in Strengthening Farmers’ Innovation Networks to Adapt to Climate Extremes," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 13(4), pages 1-21, February.
    11. Menelisi Falayi & James Gambiza & Michael Schoon, 2020. "Unpacking Changing Multi-Actor and Multi-Level Actor Ties in Transformative Spaces: Insights from a Degraded Landscape, Machubeni, South Africa," Land, MDPI, vol. 9(7), pages 1-25, July.
    12. van Ewijk, Edith & Ros-Tonen, Mirjam A.F., 2021. "The fruits of knowledge co-creation in agriculture and food-related multi-stakeholder platforms in sub-Saharan Africa – A systematic literature review," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 186(C).
    13. Murat Sartas & Marc Schut & Frans Hermans & Piet van Asten & Cees Leeuwis, 2018. "Effects of multi-stakeholder platforms on multi-stakeholder innovation networks: Implications for research for development interventions targeting innovations at scale," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 13(6), pages 1-20, June.
    14. Seifu, Mikinay & van Paassen, Annemarie & Klerkx, Laurens & Leeuwis, Cees, 2020. "Anchoring innovation methodologies to ‘go-to-scale’; a framework to guide agricultural research for development," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 182(C).
    15. Juan Carlos Sánchez Herrera & Carolyn Dimitri, 2019. "The Role of Clustering in the Adoption of Organic Dairy: A Longitudinal Networks Analysis between 2002 and 2015," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 11(6), pages 1-19, March.
    16. Sartas, Murat & Schut, Marc & Proietti, Claudio & Thiele, Graham & Leeuwis, Cees, 2020. "Scaling Readiness: Science and practice of an approach to enhance impact of research for development," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 183(C).
    17. Schut, Marc & Leeuwis, Cees & Thiele, Graham, 2020. "Science of Scaling: Understanding and guiding the scaling of innovation for societal outcomes," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 184(C).
    18. Totin, Edmond & van Mierlo, Barbara & Klerkx, Laurens, 2020. "Scaling practices within agricultural innovation platforms: Between pushing and pulling," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 179(C).
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