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JUNE AUGUST 2011 PARTNERS
This edition of Partners celebrates some of the people working together within a small group
of projects in recognition that without their dedication, enthusiasm and commitment the
smallholders who are usually featured in these pages would lead lesser lives.
The success of the projects reported in this edition, as in all our project partnerships, is
driven by the commitment of all of the people involved, both within and outside of ACIAR.
Since its inception in 1982 ACIAR has focused its operations on partnerships, linking
Australian and developing-country scientists to deliver research to those in need of it. The
effectiveness of ACIAR's partnership approach is borne out in the level of impacts generated,
both to date and those estimated to occur into the future.
ACIAR's research generates practical solutions to agricultural constraints and works to
deliver the resulting knowledge and technologies to smallholder farmers.
A recent independent analysis of 46 impact assessments undertaken for 120 ACIAR
projects estimated a stream of benefits totalling $31.6 billion. Of these benefits, $29.4 billion
flows to developing countries.
There are many reasons why our research approach is effective and successful. Research
is targeted, based on the establishment of mutual priorities between partner countries and
Australia, as reported on page 4.
The mechanism by which this is achieved is formal consultations with key stakeholders
within partner-country research and agricultural institutions. ACIAR recently held a
consultation in India, with future research to be focused through four clusters. The outcomes
of that consultation inform ACIAR's Annual Operational Plans. How this approach is being
deployed and the benefits of that approach are reported on page 6.
ACIAR supports postgraduate studies through a fellowship scheme for eligible
developing-country scientists involved in its research projects. Emerging leaders, such as
El Sotheary from Cambodia, engaged in ACIAR-supported research are the focus of a second
fellowship scheme, delivering management and leadership. El's story, together with that of
Delia Catacutan, another dual fellow, is told on page 20.
Adapting knowledge that has been proven in Australian conditions to the needs of
smallholders is a constant challenge within ACIAR projects. Often the success of such
endeavours is the result of the passion of individuals working within the project. Jeff Esdaile
is one such scientist. He devoted his working life to establishing conservation agriculture
in Australia. Now he is sparking a similar revolution, albeit on a different scale in a number
of developing countries, through adapting machinery to roll out conservation tillage in
Bangladesh and elsewhere (see page 12).
Pakistan and India are two countries that have benefited from ACIAR work on
conservation tillage, particularly in wheat cropping. Sharing resources such as germplasm
is another component of successful work, in joint research between India and Australia,
reported on page 9. And it is not germplasm alone that is shared. Australian horticultural
and dairy expertise is being shared with Pakistan under an Australian Government
There are other factors that also influence the effectiveness of ACIAR projects. A common
thread to each of these is the people involved. This edition is dedicated to all of them.
People make partnerships
Local priorities deliver results
ACIAR partnerships support Australian researchers
to work with their overseas counterparts on issues of
common concern. How our processes link Australian
and developing-country scientists to smallholder
farmers is the result of partnerships that adapt to
The crucial issue of water management in India is
proving how ACIAR's cluster approach to research
can tackle social and economic issues along with
Yesterday's aid recipient
is today's R&D partner
As increasing demand for grain challenges
drought- and flood-afflicted farmers worldwide,
a partnership between India and Australia is
allowing agricultural scientists to share germplasm,
funds and breeding expertise to help farmers lift
Lifelong passion fuels
Agronomic luminary Jeff Esdaile devoted his
working life to establishing conservation agriculture
in Australia. In retirement he is applying his ingenuity
to revolutionise farming in developing countries.
The farmer needs a market
Australian horticultural and livestock expertise
is helping disadvantaged Pakistani smallholder
farmers achieve higher productivity and profitability
through a program that also endows Pakistan with
a stronger agricultural research, development and
Sharing our citrus success
A group of citrus industry personnel from
Bhutan recently toured Australian citrus industry
operations to help direct improvements in their
A recent independent analysis of 46 impact assessments
undertaken for 120 ACIAR projects estimated a stream
of benefits totalling $31.6 billion. Of these benefits,
$29.4 billion flows to developing countries.
There are many reasons why ACIAR's research approach
is effective and successful. Research is targeted,
based on the establishment of mutual priorities between partner
countries and Australia.
Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), aciar.gov.au
GPO Box 1571, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia
This work is copyright. Apart from any use as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part
may be reproduced by any process without prior written permission from ACIAR,
Commonwealth Copyright Administration
Robert Garran Offices, National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600
or posted at http://ag.gov.au/cca
© Commonwealth of Australia 2011
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