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Madecor Group Offers Some Perspectives and Insights on Agricultural Development

The following is an executive brief of the Madecor Group’s latest contribution —entitled “Some Perspectives and Insights on Agricultural Development”— to the discourse on two of Philippines’ pressing matters, food security and effective agricultural development. Follow the links to view/download the Executive Summary and Main Report. You can contact the Madecor Group for comments and suggestions here.

Aidsi implements school leadership training program in malawi.

The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MOEST), Government of Malawi with concurrence of the World Bank (WB), contracted the Consortium of the Asian Institute for Developmental Studies, Inc. (AIDSI), Madecor Career System, Inc. (MCS), and the School of Education, Chancellor College, University of Malawi (SEUM) to act as the lead institutions in implementing and managing the School Leadership Training Programme (SLP). SLP is a pilot project to institutionalize cost-effective intervention schemes aimed at improving the quality of decision-making of head-teachers (HTs), deputy head-teachers (DHTs) and primary education advisors (PEAs) in a school setting in Malawi affected by a resource constrained environment. Eventually, the SLP is expected to impact positively on the quality of learning and equity of access in Malawi primary schools, particularly for girls and the disadvantaged groups.

SLP is a key intervention reform area within the Education Sector Implementation Plan II (ESIP II) 2014-2018. ESIP II aims at improving the equity and quality of primary education delivery service with emphasis on improved accountability and functioning at the school level. In order to meet the expectations, the Consortium, through its international and local experts together with its trainers and supervisors, shall conduct the following activities divided in five phases:
Phase 1: Training Design and Content Preparation
Phase 2: Training of Trainers
Phase 3: Pilot Training
Phase 4: Main Training and Supervisory/Follow-Up School Visits
Phase 5: Refresher Training

As part of the monitoring, reporting and quality assurance system, a database management system shall be developed. All activities shall be closely monitored and data/information generated from the conduct of all trainings shall be included in the system. These shall include but not limited to information regarding the training participants such as their attendance and assessment scores, information regarding the trainers and facilitators, dates and results of follow-up visits, among others.

SOME PERSPECTIVES AND INSIGHTS ON AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT

By Madecor Group, Los Baños, Philippines

Executive Brief

This is an extensive review of the continuing high potential of Philippine Agriculture to become an engine of growth for solutions to rural poverty and as a base for agro-industrial development and wider prosperity. The view is that while our farmer capabilities are at par with our neighbors, we have not been agile in national development strategies that incorporate the capacities of our farmers to be extremely productive and also to support them with policies that are integrational rather the disparate approach by independent agencies based on commodities and disciplines that atomize our efforts.

In the globalized economy, Philippine Agriculture will have to put emphasis on commodities and/or products with competitive advantages while ensuring food and also nutrition security. This will include a mix of strategies that goes beyond the limiting effects of rice self-sufficiency, land reform and tradition to such other policies of programmed complementarities within the country and strategic alliances and exchanges with its friends and neighboring countries. This can bring down costs of basic staple food for the consumers and bring up incomes of farming families.

new kind of land reform is proposed: land consolidation reform to use more of the family labor resources. The work and family ethic of the Filipino farmer fits another form of consolidation, an agribusiness partnership with a “Big-Brother” scheme. The treatise also points out that our major industries of coconut, sugar, rice, etc. need new strategies or technologies to make them more competitive. Diversification and intensification are two strategies that must be seriously considered together with crop rotation, alternation and multiple cropping to register increased total farm incomes and benefits and not just single crop incomes. The technologies that we could capitalize on are in: fully connected infrastructure, rural water engineering, environment-friendly techniques, manufacture and exports appropriate mechanization for small farms, legumes intercropping and extensification, value adding processing for seasonal surplus commodities, post-harvest and processing integration, creative credit and insurance schemes, biotechnology and clean and climate-smart precision agriculture.

Many displaced farmers will need new resettlement programs to have them in (a) special programs of responsible land stewardships for agroforestry, mangrove rehabilitation, reforestation, and infrastructure development, (b) special resettlements in areas needing good farming methods on coconuts, root crops, fish farming, rice farming, multiple cropping, etc. either in-country and even in other countries trying to improve their capacities and productivities and can use experienced farmers.

The above will mean a drastic and rapid review by the new administration of all policies and programs related to agriculture, natural resources, rural infrastructures, agri-entrepreneurial education, and even foreign relations to change from the present nature of atomized functions in government and education, towards encouraging more integration of functions, coordination among agencies at the lowest homogeneous level, and interlinkages among disciplines that will span university education, professional functions, administrative and implementation functions among government bureaucracies and even business and entrepreneurial activities, all with emphasis on competitiveness, profitability and maximization of benefits. This also means that an Asian ethic around family, community and common welfare will be promoted.

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