Investments on Pro-Poor Development Projects on Goats: Ensuring Success for Improved Livelihoods
By Dr. Devendra
ABSTRACT: The elements that determine the success of development projects on goats and the prerequisites for ensuring this are discussed in the context of the bewildering diversity of goat genetic resources, production systems, multifunctionality, and opportunities for responding to constraints for productivity enhancement. Key determinants for the success of pro-poor projects are the imperatives of realistic project design, resolution of priorities and positive impacts to increase investments and spur agricultural growth, and appropriate policy. Throughout the developing world, there exist 97% of the total world population of 921 million goats across all agro-ecological zones (AEZs), including 570 breeds and 64% share of the breeds. They occupy a very important biological and socio-economic niche in farming systems making significant multifunctional contributions especially to food, nutrition and financial security, stability of farm households, and survival of the poor in the rural areas. Definitions are given of successful and failed projects.
The analyses highlighted in successful projects the value of strong participatory efforts with farmers and climate change. Climate change effects on goats are inevitable and are mediated through heat stress, type of AEZ, water availability, quantity and quality of the available feed resources and type of production system. Within the prevailing production systems, improved integrated tree crops - ruminant systems are underestimated and are an important pathway to enhance C sequestration. Key development strategies and opportunities for research and development (R and D) are enormous, and include inter alia defining a policy framework, resolution of priority constraints using systems perspectives and community-based participatory activities, application of yield-enhancing technologies, intensification, scaling up, and impacts. The priority for development concerns the rainfed areas with large concentrations of ruminants in which goats, with a capacity to cope with heat tolerance, can be the entry point for development. Networks and networking are very important for the diffusion of information and can add value to R and D. Well formulated projects with clear priority setting and participatory R and D ensure success and the realisation of food security, improved livelihoods and self-reliance in the future. (Key Words: Pro-poor, Poverty, Goats, Improver Breeds, Development Projects, Climate Change, Food Security, Rainfed, Genetic Diversity, Conservation, Strategies, Policy, Agricultural R and D).
Read the entire invited review at: www.ajas.info/pdf/26-1.pdf
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