Pulling Agricultural Innovation and the Market Together
Feeding an additional three billion people over the next four decades, along with providing food security for another one billion people that are currently hungry or malnourished, is a huge challenge. Meeting those goals in a context of land and water scarcity, climate change, and declining crop yields will require another giant leap in agricultural innovation. The aim of this paper is to stimulate a dialogue on what new approaches might be needed to meet these needs and how innovative funding mechanisms could play a role. In particular, could “pull mechanisms,” where donors stimulate demand for new technologies, be a useful complement to traditional “push mechanisms,” where donors provide funding to increase the supply of research and development (R&D). With a pull mechanism, donors seek to engage the private sector, which is almost entirely absent today in developing country R&D for agriculture, and they pay only when specified outcomes are delivered and adopted.
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