The proposed conference is a result of a commitment made by Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, Mr. Willy Bett at the September 2016 Global Open Data on Agriculture and Nutrition (GODAN) Summit held at the margins of the UN General Assembly, in New York.
During the Summit the Cabinet Secretary accepted a call by GODAN to champion the principles of collaboration and use of open data for agriculture and nutrition and its support for the Comprehensive Agreement on Agriculture and Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) in Africa.
Agriculture has an inert potential for transforming economies in the global south. It holds the key to rapid job creation, improved health and livelihoods for majority of the world’s poor. The sector however suffers from inadequate resourcing and capacity. While acknowledging that resources is not the only panacea for the challenges in Agriculture, adequate financing for agriculture remains a viable investment for food and human security and improved livelihoods for farmers.
The sector however has been making strides in adopting innovations and new practices to increase productivity, reduce cost of food consumers and increase revenue for farmers. More specifically, agribusiness and agri-preneurship that leverage on technology such as mobile telephony and the internet is already taking root. While the agricultural sector is creating new jobs and opportunities for employment, it requires accurate, accessible and usable data to scale-up this potential. The use of data for decision-making and action for agricultural growth however, remains elusive.
This is because available data remains largely inaccessible to players along the Agricultural value chains: including farmers, processors, traders and consumers.
The conference will therefore focus on “Catalyzing Agricultural Transformation for Inclusive Growth” under the theme “Harnessing the demographic dividend through investment in food and nutrition data.”
The Ministerial conference seeks to mobilize high level political support to ensure availability, accessibility and usability of data for agricultural planning and decisionmaking in the global south.
More specifically, the conference seeks to:
1. Increase financial, human and technological capacities in the global south for agriculture and nutrition data;
2. Improve coordination of data for agriculture and nutrition across governments, private sector, and academia in the
3. Harmonize policies that improve collection, coordination, use, dissemination of agriculture and nutrition data;
4. Provide a platform for peer-learning, co-creation and sharing of expertise/ practices on proven success on the use
of quality data and standards for agriculture and nutrition;
5. Create opportunities for the adoption of youth driven agricultural innovations within the public sector to catalyse
employment and wealth creation.
6. Facilitate networking and to showcase proven initiatives on open data for agricultural transformation.
The Conference is being co-convened by the Government of Kenya, Radeecal Communications and GODAN Secretariat. The conference has invited 1,000 high level participants, led by Ministers for Agriculture from 100 countries, private sector, academia, think-tanks, civil society,
youth organisations, research networks and development practitioners, the United Nations and multilateral institutions especially the African Development Bank (AfDB), UN Economic Commissions for Africa, Asia and Latin America, the African Union Commission, Africa’s Regional Economic Communities (RECs) and international organizations.
The Conference program is within the following tracks:
1. High Level Panels on concrete proposals and actions by
government that will catalyze agricultural transformation
2. Improving Data Coordination across the agricultural value
chains and ecosystems
3. Improving Agricultural Productivity
4. Improving Capacity for production, analysis and use of data
5. Improving Financing for Smallholders
6. 3 Day Exhibition
1. Conference Declaration
2. Outcomes Document
3. Commitments towards capacity,
opening up data on agriculture and nutrition
4. Model for harnessing innovation driven design
thinking in agriculture
5. An Agricultural Data Charter
6. Conference Report
We expect that the conference will:
• Substantively contribute to mobilizing efforts throughout Africa and the broader Global South to ensure every
country is producing the data needed to achieve the agriculture and nutrition security related goals in local,
continental agendas and the 2030 Agenda;
• Operationalize an agriculture data charter to support efforts to improve the availability, accessibility and usability
of agriculture and nutrition data within the context of the normative frameworks already agreed to by states;
• Contribute to increased political will that ensures data for planning and decision making in the agriculture sector is
available for use;
• Catalyze institutional thinking to support increased investments (financial) supporting the Ministries responsible
for Agriculture, and other stakeholders in the sector in order to improve sectorial efficiencies through data driven
capacity and coordination;
• Increased use of open data for agriculture and nutrition from participating countries.